Agenda Item 2: Annual report of the UNHCHR and reports of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Secretary-General
General Debate on High Commissioner's Oral Update
Statement by: International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD) and Geneva International Centre for Justice (GICJ)
25 June 2019
We greatly appreciate the update of the High Commissioner, especially regarding the ongoing trials in Iraq of alleged former ISIS fighters, and the situation of their families and children. However, much more attention must be placed on the larger human rights situation in the devasted country.
The use of trials without due process to sentence alleged ISIS fighters to death is, as the High Commissioner mentioned, a grave problem in Iraq. However, this is just one example of the absence of the rule of law in the country. Many innocent Iraqis are now on death row without having been able to defend themselves, and even without knowing the accusations against them. The unfortunate reality is that Iraq’s judiciary is not independent, and legal proceedings of all types are commonly subject to meddling by political interests including militias.
The High Commissioner has been provided information about other issues, including the systematic use of rape by army personnel in Iraq. Rape has been used to target particularly vulnerable people such as the displaced people across Iraq. In terms of food security, just as Iraq is poised to enjoy a large harvest due to generous spring rains, militias are torching orchards and fields to keep Iraq reliant upon Iranian food imports while terrorizing entire rural communities.
EAFORD and Geneva International Centre for Justice request the High Commissioner to further investigate these gross human rights violations, and we call on the Council to seek international cooperation to dissolve all the militias in Iraq in order to re-establish the rule of law.
Justice, Human rights, Geneva, geneva4justice, GICJ, Geneva International Centre For Justice