Côte d’Ivoire: UN expert launches fifth official visit to assess human rights situation in the country

GENEVA / ABIDJAN (14 October 2013) – The United Nations Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Côte d’Ivoire, Doudou Diène, started today his fifth official mission to the country, from 14 to 23 October 2013, to gather information on the human rights situation in Côte d'Ivoire.

“At this important period of the Ivorian people’s history, it is essential that I assess the progress made since my last visit in May 2013, which was focused on human rights, the fight against impunity and national reconciliation” Mr. Diène said.

“I will have the opportunity, during this visit, to discuss the way forward in the establishment of the Rule of Law in the country with the relevant actors, including government officials, civil society organizations, political leaders, as well as international partners of Côte d’Ivoire,” the Independent Expert noted.

During his ten-day mission, Mr. Diène will meet high-level officials, including several key Ministers, members of the ruling party as well as those from the political opposition, and a number of judicial officials, security officials, and heads of the Dialogue, Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the National Human Rights Commission.

Mr. Diene will also hold meetings with civil society representatives, and the diplomatic community. He will also visit detention centres throughout the country.

The visit will enable the Independent Expert to gather information on the human rights situation in Côte d’Ivoire with a view to submitting his report to the Human Rights Council at its twenty-fifth session to be held in March-April 2014.

The Independent Expert will hold a press conference on Wednesday 23 October at 3 p.m. at the UNOCI Headquarters in Abidjan.

Mr. Doudou Diène (Senegal) took up his functions as UN Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Côte d'Ivoire on 1 November 2011. In that capacity, he acts independently from any Government or organization. Mr. Diène was previously the UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance in 2002—2008.

The mandate of the Independent Expert was established by the UN Human Rights Council in June 2011 for a period of one year to assist the Government and relevant actors in the follow-up of the recommendations of the International Commission of Inquiry on Côte d’Ivoire and the Human Rights Council, including the ones addressed to the international community. The mandate was renewed by the Human Rights Council in June 2013 for one year.

UN Human Rights, Country page – Côte d’Ivoire: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/AfricaRegion/Pages/CIIndex.aspx

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