Renewal and strengthening of the special procedure mandate on the situation of human rights in Sudan, UN Human Rights Council 24th session (9-27 September 2013)

Excellency,

The undersigned organisations are writing to urge your delegation to ensure that serious and widespread violations of international human rights and humanitarian law in Sudan are adequately addressed by the Human Rights Council during its 24th session.

Given its mandate to address gross and systematic violations of human rights, we are deeply concerned by the Council's persistent failure to respond effectively to the situation in Sudan. Since 2011, the Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Sudan has held an item 10 mandate to offer technical assistance and capacity-building support to Sudan, but widespread and systematic violations of human rights and international humanitarian law have continued unabated. We consider that the Human Rights Council should now adopt a resolution under item 4 condemning these continuing violations, identifying concrete recommendations, urging for their implementation, and requesting the mandate-holder to monitor and report on them.

Violations of human rights and international humanitarian law perpetrated by government forces and allied militias against civilians continued throughout the year in Darfur, Southern Kordofan and Blue Nile, and spread to Northern Kordofan. In Darfur, the government has failed to protect civilians from abuses during a surge in fighting between predominantly ethnic Arab groups over land and other natural resources in which its forces have participated.

Throughout the country, the Government of Sudan has increased restrictions on freedoms of expression, association and assembly in what appears to be a concerted effort to shut down independent dialogue. The government continues to use the National Intelligence and Security Services (NISS) and other security forces to arbitrarily detain perceived opponents of the ruling

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