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13 Human rights groups say UNHRC not getting job done; call for “independent mechanism of inquiry”

In a joint call for action, 13 national, regional and international human rights organisations including five from Libya, have called on the UN to support the creation of an independent body which would investigate human rights crimes in Libya by all sides since 2012. They say it is the only way to ensure “accountability, justice, truth and reparation”.

The groups say that the efforts of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHCR) to address the situation in Libya through technical assistance no longer adequately reflectes the gravity of the situation.

Hundreds of cases of alleged violations, including extrajudicial killings, widespread use of torture and arbitrary arrest have been submitted to Libya’s Attorney General over the past three years naming a number of armed groups but no concrete steps have been taken toward achieving accountability, the groups said.

All actors have been operating with full impunity since the fighting intensified in May 2014, the groups further explained.

The groups stressed that as the UN and Libyan politicians move toward creating a unity government, reaching a ceasefire agreement and preserving the work of the Constitutional Drafting Assembly (CDA), it is crucial that there is an independent, effective and transparent investigation into past and ongoing human rights violations so that those responsible are brought to account.

The groups that signed the petition are:

  1. Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS)
  2. Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR)
  3. Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Network (WMHRN)
  4. Forum Asia
  5. International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)
  6. International Commission of Jurists (ICJ)
  7. Reporters without Borders (RSF)
  8. Lawyers for Justice in Libya (LFJL)
  9. Libyan Organization for Legal Aid
  10. Libyan Judges Organization
  11. Libyan Network for Human Rights Defenders
  12. Mercy Association for the Defense of Internally Displaced Persons, Libya
  13. World Organization Against Torture (OMCT)

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