The 50th session of the United Nations Human Rights Council
13 June to 8 July 2022
Statement of International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD) and
Geneva International Centre for Justice
Item 6 : Universal Periodic Review - Adoption of the South Sudan UPR review
4 July 2022
By Anyssa Boyer
Thank you President,
We thank the Republic of South Sudan for its engagement in the Universal Periodic Review and welcome the report of the Working Group. While we welcome measures taken to address women’s human rights, we would like to emphasise the continuous violations that threaten women’s freedoms, fundamental human rights, and lives.
We remain deeply concerned about the ongoing human rights violations faced by women in the country. The South Sudan Report of the OHCHR highlighted that since the 2013 conflict, women’s exposure to sexual violence has remained staggeringly high. These include instances of rape, abduction, sexual slavery, sexual mutilation, and sexual torture. Perpetrators continue to violate women’s rights and are not held accountable for their actions and as a result, enjoy blatant impunity. South Sudan lacks appropriate mechanisms and institutions to address violence against women which coincides with the anti-gender-based violence bill which has yet to be submitted to Parliament. Therefore, we encourage the implementation of recommendation 113.218 which calls to enhance the protection of women and girls against discrimination, forced marriage and gender-based violence by bolstering the legal framework and fully implementing the legal provisions on gender equality and sexual violence.
While we acknowledge the government’s ratification of the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, we call on South Sudan to ratify key instruments to protect women which include the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.
EAFORD and Geneva International Centre for Justice (GICJ) urges South Sudan to implement additional legal frameworks to promote and protect women’s rights. We call on South Sudan to include women in participative decision-making processes both in political and social spheres. South Sudan should halt all harmful practices that target women’s dignity and have long-lasting effects on their physical, social, and psychological trauma that persists throughout generations.