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10 Sep 2018 description

Distinguished President,
Director-General of the UN Office in Geneva,
Colleagues and friends,

It is an honour to be called to this mandate, to assist States to uphold the human rights of their people, in this year in which we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

13 Aug 2018 description
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Somali version

Somalia: Respect for human rights vital for future elections - UN report

GENEVA / MOGADISHU – A UN report has urged Somalia to build on the significant gains made in its peace process in the last five years and take steps to ensure future elections are not marred by the human rights violations and abuses committed during the 2016-2017 electoral process.

10 Dec 2017 description


Geneva / Mogadishu – Armed conflict in Somalia continues to exact a heavy toll on civilians, damaging infrastructure and livelihoods, displacing millions of people, and impeding access to humanitarian relief for communities in need, a UN report published on Sunday said.

05 Sep 2017 description
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Conflict areas
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Civilian casualties
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UPDATE: Civilian casualties
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Arbitrary or illegal detentions

Yemen: An “entirely man-made catastrophe” – UN human rights report urges international investigation

GENEVA (5 September 2017) – Human rights violations and abuses continue unabated in Yemen, along with unrelenting violations of international humanitarian law, with civilians suffering deeply the consequences of an “entirely man-made catastrophe”, according to a UN human rights report published on Tuesday.

24 Mar 2017 description

GENEVA (24 March 2017) – Two years and more than 13,000 civilian casualties later, the conflict in Yemen continues to rage, with an intensification in hostilities over the past three months that has exacerbated the entirely man-made catastrophe, with children starving and refugees and fishermen bombed, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein said today.

25 Apr 2016 description

Several sources estimate that about 500 migrants and asylum seekers may have lost their lives this week in the Mediterranean Sea in an unknown location between Libya and Italy. The vast majority of these people were nationals from Eritrea, Ethiopia and Somalia.

28 Oct 2015 description

Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Rupert Colville
Location: Geneva
Date: 27 October 2015
Subject: Nauru / Australia

We call upon Australia and Nauru to urgently provide a decent option for 'Abyan,' (the pseudonym of a Somali refugee) to obtain adequate mental and physical care and to terminate her pregnancy if she desires. Abyan was allegedly raped in Nauru in July, and is now 15 weeks pregnant as a result. She was returned 11 days ago from Australia to Nauru, without a termination having taken place.

31 Mar 2015 description

Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Cécile Pouilly
Location: Geneva
Date: 31 March 2015
Subjects: (1) Yemen
(2) Syria
(3) Somalia

(1) Yemen

A press release will be issued shortly on the fast deteriorating human rights situation in Yemen, with dozens of civilians killed over the past days.

04 Apr 2014 description

1) Central African Republic

We have received more detailed information on the incident involving Chadian soldiers in Bangui on March 29, following an initial investigation carried out by a human rights team on the ground.

Earlier this week, the team from the Human Rights and Justice Section of BINUCA visited two medical centers (the Hopital Communautaire, and the Hopital General) where most of the survivors are being treated and also visited the site where the shooting took place at PK 12, in the North of Bangui.

22 Jul 2013 description

Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Rupert Colville
Date: 19 July 2013
Location: Geneva
1) Guinea
2) Cameroon
3) Somalia
4) Egypt

1) Guinea

18 Apr 2013 description

GENEVA (17 April 2013) – The United Nations Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Somalia, Shamsul Bari, condemned in the strongest terms Sunday’s deadly bomb and gun attacks at the Banadir Regional Court and near the airport in Mogadishu. Mr. Bari urged the Somali Government, and the international community, to continue its efforts to strengthen the administration of justice, despite this attack to the justice sector.

07 Feb 2013 description

GENEVA (6 February 2013) – The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay said Wednesday that the widely criticized trial and sentencing of a Somali journalist, and the alleged raped victim he interviewed, risks seriously undermining the fight against sexual violence and urged that their case should be reopened as soon as possible.

11 Oct 2012 description

Her genteel bespectacled looks belie the steely determination that 2012 Nansen Refugee Award Laureate Hawa Aden Mohamed has demonstrated she has in spades.

The founder of the Galkayo Education Centre for Peace and Development (GECPD) in Puntland, Somalia, Hawa has overcome the opposition of war lords, local leaders and the dangers of operating in one of the world’s worst conflict zones to help transform the lives of thousands of girls in Somalia by providing education ,vocational training,shelter and protection.

18 Jun 2012 description

Geneva, 18 June 2012

Madame President, Distinguished Members of the Human Rights Council, Excellencies, Colleagues and Friends,

13 Apr 2012 description

In its submission to the Universal Periodic Review in 2011, the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia described a breakdown of rule-of-law institutions because of the conflict which has now stretched across two decades.

In the past few months, the security situation has improved as the insurgent group, Al Shabaab, has withdrawn from the capital Mogadishu and other key centres. The international community has rallied in response, most recently pledging support at a conference of world leaders in London for the transition to an inclusive and democratic government.

01 Feb 2012 description

The Somali Minister of the Interior and National Security, Abdisamad Mohamud Hassan encouraged participants in the Human Rights Audit workshop reviewing the framework, “to critically and constructively put forward their views on the human rights provisions of the Draft Constitution.”

21 Oct 2011 description

This update provides information on the protection environment in Somalia, including apparent violations of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law as reported during the last two weeks through the IASC Somalia Protection Cluster monitoring systems. Incidents mentioned in this report are not exhaustive. They are intended to highlight credible reports in order to inform and prompt programming and advocacy initiatives by the humanitarian community and national authorities.

General Overview

15 Sep 2011 description

Dr. Shamsul Bari, the UN Independent Expert on Somalia has visited the country twice this year, in February and again in July. In his account of those visits to the Human Rights Council, Bari points out that he and others warned months ago of the “terrible consequences of the drought” but he says he “was pained to discover that, despite clear warnings by all concerned, the international response has been far from satisfactory.”

16 Sep 2010 description

After witnessing first-hand the devastation of the conflict in Somalia, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kyung-wha Kang has called for concerted efforts to tackle decades of impunity in the horn of Africa nation.

At the end of a three-day visit to Kenya, Somaliland and Puntland, Kang said: "Such a brief mission of course allows me to only scratch the surface of what is a complex situation resulting from prolonged conflict, but I do come away with a profound sense that we can - and must - do more now to contribute to Somali efforts to create a peaceful and prosperous …