10 March 2014
GENEVA (10 March 2014) – The United Nations Special Rapporteur on slavery, Gulnara Shahinian, has hailed as “an essential step forward in the fight against slavery” the formal adoption by the Mauritanian Government of the road map prepared in cooperation with the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.
“I see the 6th of March 2014, as a turning point in the fight against slavery in Mauritania,” Ms. Shahinian said. “The formal adoption of the road map for the implementation of my 2010 recommendations* is not only symbolic, but marks a new phase in Mauritania’s efforts to eradicate slavery and its remnants once and for all.”
“I trust that the Government will deploy all necessary efforts to fully implement the road map, in close cooperation with civil society, so that its commitment results in concrete changes in practice,” the human rights expert noted.
The official announcement comes just a week after the Special Rapporteur’s follow-up visit to the country to discuss the formal adoption of the road map and assess new developments and initiatives taken by the Mauritanian authorities in response to her previous recommendations.
Ms. Shahinian will present the findings and recommendations of her follow-up visit at a forthcoming session of the UN Human Rights Council in September 2014.
(*) The ‘Road Map for the implementation of the recommendations of the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences in the context of the eradication of slavery practices in Mauritania” is based on Ms. Shahinian’s 2010 report to the UN Human Rights Council: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Slavery/SRSlavery/Pages/CountryVisits.aspx
Ms. Gulnara Shahinian was appointed as the first Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, its causes and consequences in May 2008. She is a lawyer with extensive experience as an expert consultant for various UN, EU, Council of Europe, OSCE and government bodies on children’s rights, gender, migration and trafficking. Ms Shahinian is also a former trustee of the UN Voluntary Trust Fund on Contemporary forms of Slavery. Learn more, log on to: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Slavery/SRSlavery/Pages/SRSlaveryIndex.aspx
Check the press release following Ms. Shahinian’s 2014 follow-up mission: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=14286&LangID=E
UN Human Rights, Country page – Mauritania: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/MENARegion/Pages/MRIndex.aspx
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