24 November 2017
GENEVA, 24 November 2017 (Issued as received) – The UN’s Independent Expert on the human rights situation in Mali, Suliman Baldo, is visiting the country from 27 November to 1 December 2017, amid concerns about ongoing delays in the implementation of the country’s peace agreement.
“Serious human rights violations are continuing despite the signing of the peace and reconciliation agreement in June 2015,” said Mr. Baldo. “During my visit, I will pay particular attention to the situation of victims, including women who have suffered sexual violence, and to the issue of impunity for the perpetrators of human rights abuses.
“It is important that acts which violate international human rights law and international humanitarian law, have been included among the criteria for the imposition of sanctions set out by the UN Security Council in September 2017,” he added.
The delayed implementation of the peace accord has raised concerns including the lack of any State presence in parts of the country, and has made it difficult to ensure respect for human rights. The humanitarian situation is especially worrying in central and northern Mali, the expert noted.
“The persistence of violence, instability and of people being forced to flee their homes has further worsened the humanitarian situation, and the delivery of aid is difficult and dangerous, especially in the north,” said Mr. Baldo.
The independent expert said he also wanted to see what action had been taken to protect civilians in response to his previous warnings about the worsening security situation.
During his mission, Mr. Baldo will meet the Malian authorities, diplomats, representatives of the UN stabilisation mission MINUSMA and UN agencies, human rights defenders and civil society organizations.
The findings from the expert’s visit will form part of his report to the Human Rights Council in March 2018.
Mr. Suliman Baldo (Sudan) took up his role as independent expert on the human rights situation in Mali in 2013. The mandate was renewed for one year in March 2017 with the aim of helping the Malian Government promote and protect human rights and to implement recommendations contained in UN Human Rights Council resolutions. Mr. Baldo is a former Africa director for the International Centre for Transitional Justice based in New York and for the International Crisis Group. In 2011 he was one of the three members of the international commission on post-election violence in Côte d’Ivoire, set up by the Human Rights Council.
The Independent Experts are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures’ experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.
UN Human Rights country page – Mali
For more information and media inquiries, please contact:
In Geneva: Brian Ruane (+41 22 928 9724 / email@example.com)
In Bamako (during the visit): Guillaume Ngefa (+223 94 95 02 26 / firstname.lastname@example.org)
For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts please contact:
Bryan Wilson – Media Unit (+ 41 22 917 9826 / email@example.com)
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