Alleged reprisals and intimidation against 240 who cooperated with UN 

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Allegations of reprisals and intimidation were documented against immoderate 240 civilian society members, activists and journalists, across 45 countries in the twelvemonth up to 31 April, simply due to the fact that they had been cooperating with the United Nations.  

That’s according to information from a new report presented on Wednesday to the Human Rights Council by the UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, Ilze Brands Kehris.  

Many cases were reported anonymously, due to the fact that of fearfulness of reprisal.  There were also around 50 individuals who experienced detention, portion others were subjected to house arrest. 

Despite some push-back, Ms. Kehris said the study “makes clear” that “the scope and severity of cases of intimidation and reprisal persist and successful unacceptably precocious numbers.” 

From surveillance to restrictive legislation 

Based connected the findings of the report, she highlighted 4 main trends.  

First, successful adjacent to fractional of the countries, there are allegations of monitoring and surveillance, some online and offline, of individuals and groups. Numerous cases see hacking of accounts, question bans and different question restrictions. 

Second, Ms. Kehris pointed to repeated allegations of a signifier of surveillance of those moving with UN organisations and personnel. ? CAN WE SAY IT THIS WAY? This happened in China, Egypt, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Viet Nam, India, Israel, Myanmar, the Philippines, and Venezuel, said the report.  

Third, she highlighted restrictive legislation, usually on grounds of nationalist security, including counter-terrorism measures, oregon based connected laws governing activities of civilian nine organizations. 

False ‘threats’ 

“Let maine beryllium clear,” Ms. Kehris said. “Claiming women’s rights earlier a UN assemblage is not an enactment of coercion and speaking up successful UN fora connected the rights of minorities oregon indigenous peoples is not a menace to nationalist security.” 

Fourth, and lastly, she described “increasingly challenging, oregon adjacent astatine times repressive, environments for victims, quality rights defenders, journalists and different civilian nine actors.” 

For the Assistant Secretary-General, determination is “a worrisome trend” where the enactment is asked to study connected a case where the alleged unfortunate seeks anonymity. Out of the 240 individuals referred to successful the report, much than 100 are not mentioned by name, due to extortion issues. 

A UN priority 

These victims proceed to beryllium subjected to serious quality rights violations, specified as arbitrary arrests and detention, but besides torture and ill-treatment, and adjacent decease successful custody, sidesplitting and enforced disappearances.  

In the digital sphere, activists and journalists person been attacked connected societal media aft speaking astatine UN meetings, and victims targeted for submitting accusation oregon communicating electronically with the organization.  

Mr. Kehris also pointed out some examples of bully practice by Member States, such as considering and preparing for the risks or immoderate backlash that civil society briefers to the Security Council may face. She besides called States’ responses to allegations overall, “encouraging.”  

She concluded saying that the Member States should not “tolerate those who bring captious perspectives to us, being silenced.” 

“We request to bash much and amended to provide safe and unfastened spaces for interaction, wherever those who talk up tin beryllium heard without fearfulness of immoderate benignant of retribution,” she added.

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