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Sudan: Human Rights

Volume 478: debated on Thursday 26 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what reports he has received of progress towards establishing a National Human Rights Commission in Sudan; and if he will make a statement. (213282)

The 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) established the National Constitutional Review Commission (NCRC) which was mandated to set up the National Human Rights Commission. The NCRC has drafted the necessary legislation but this has not yet been passed. In the south, a Southern Sudan Human Rights Commission was set up in June 2006. The Interim National Constitution, adopted in 2005 under the CPA, includes a Bill of Rights that enshrines the principle of human rights at all levels of government and society.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what proposals he is considering to strengthen the UN Mission in Sudan's human rights mandate; and if he will make a statement. (213283)

The UK remains closely involved in supporting the reviews of the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) mandate. UN Security Council Resolution 1590, which first mandated UNMIS, ensured that UNMIS has “adequate human rights presence and expertise”. We support the UN's assessment that the extant mandate is sufficient to underpin UNMIS's monitoring and reporting of human rights violations.

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what international mechanisms exist to investigate allegations of human rights abuses by Sudanese armed forces; and if he will make a statement. (213284)

Both the UN Mission in Sudan (UNMIS) and the UN-African Union Mission in Darfur (UNAMID) incorporate an extensive human rights network, with officers investigating alleged human rights abuses by any party. Both UNMIS and UNAMID produce a weekly report of such allegations. Where there is evidence of specific human rights abuse by the Sudanese armed forces—or any other warring faction—we raise it with the appropriate authorities.