Ahead of tomorrow’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Libya by the UN Human Rights Council, Lawyers for Justice in Libya (LFJL) has established a campaign to engage the involvement of Libyan civil society in the review. The campaign has been named UPRna, a play on Arabic in which the “-na” suffix means “our”.
In addition to reports from the Libyan government and international human rights organisations, the UPR will take into account reports from Libya human rights and civil society groups. LFJL launched a campaign to generate input from Libyan civil society regarding human rights abuses and progress in Libya since the last UPR held in 2010.
The last UPR was held during the days of the Qaddafi regime. As LFJL pointed out, Libyan organisations were prevented by the regime from having a say in that review, so this marks the first time for local groups to have a voice in the process.
LFJL, the Women are Coming Movement, Mercy Association for Charitable and Humanitarian Aid (Al-Rahma), the National Libyan Organisation for the Development of People with Disabilities, the Libyan Association for Tebu Culture and the Libyan Centre for Freedom of Press have come together to form the Coalition of Libyan Human Rights Organisations (“the Coalition”). Together these groups have educated themselves on the UPR process and on their own roles in the process. They have already provided several recommendations to the UPR.
LFJL has launched a UPRna website to provide Libyan NGOs the opportunity to learn more about the UPR process, share experiences and provide recommendations. The website will provide updates on the Coalition and its activities, and includes a link so that users can watch tomorrow’s review online.
The UPRna website is http://www.libyanjustice.org/upr/upr.