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Somalia: Human Rights

Volume 479: debated on Thursday 17 July 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs pursuant to the answer to the right hon. Member for Richmond Yorks, (Mr. Hayne) of 30 June 2008, Official Report, column 675W, what proposals the UK has put forward to strengthen the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Somalia. (218427)

The UK provides significant financial (fifth largest donor) and political support to the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The UK Permanent Mission to the UN in Geneva is in regular contact with the OHCHR about its field activities.

The OHCHR has seconded a human rights adviser to the UN country team covering Somalia. This has resulted in a human rights based approach being reflected in policy and operational planning undertaken by the UN country team. The UK welcomes the OHCHR’s intention to conduct an assessment mission to Somalia, as soon as the security situation will allow, in order to assess how it can most effectively improve the human rights situation.