Situation of human rights in Iraq.

1992/71.
Situation of human rights in Iraq

The Commission on Human Rights, Guided by the principles embodied in the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenants on Human Rights, Reaffirming that all Member States have an obligation to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and to fulfil the obligations they have undertaken under the various international instruments in this field, Mindful that Iraq is a party to the International Covenants on Human Rights and to other human rights instruments, Recalling Security Council resolution 688 (1991) of 5 April 1991, in which the Council demanded an end to the repression of the Iraqi civilian population and insisted that Iraq cooperate with humanitarian organizations to ensure that the human and political rights of all Iraqi citizens were respected, Recalling also Security Council resolutions 706 (1991) of 15 August 1991 and 712 (1991) of 19 September 1991, Recalling further its resolution 1991/74 of 6 March 1991, in which it requested its Chairman to appoint a special rapporteur to make a thorough study of the violations of human rights by the Government of Iraq, based on all information the Special Rapporteur might deem relevant, including information provided by intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and any comments and material provided by the Government of Iraq, and to submit an interim report thereon to the General Assembly at its forty-sixth session and a report to the Commission at its forty-eighth session, Recalling General Assembly resolution 46/134 of 17 December 1991, in which the Assembly expressed its deep concern at the flagrant violations of human rights by the Government of Iraq and decided to continue the examination of the situation of human rights in Iraq at its forty-seventh session in the light of additional elements provided by the Commission on Human Rights and the Economic and Social Council, Deeply concerned at the massive and grave violations of human rights by the Government of Iraq, such as summary and arbitrary executions, torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, enforced or involuntary disappearances, arbitrary arrest and detention, lack of due process and the rule of law and of freedom of thought, of expression, of association and of access to food and health care, hostage-taking and the use of persons as "human shields", Deeply concerned also at the fact that chemical weapons have been used on the Iraqi civilian population, at the forced displacement of hundreds of thousands of Kurds and at the destruction of Iraqi towns and villages, as well as at the fact that tens of thousands of displaced Kurds have to take refuge in camps and shelters in the north of Iraq and at the deportation of thousands of Kurdish families, Deeply concerned further at the repressive measures taken by the Government of Iraq against the Shiah communities in Iraq, in particular those in the southern marshes, Noting that, despite the formal cooperation extended to the Special Rapporteur by the Government of Iraq, this cooperation needs to be improved, in particular by giving full replies to the Special Rapporteur's inquiries about acts being committed by the Government of Iraq that are incompatible with international human rights instruments that are binding on that country,

1. Takes note with appreciation of the report on the situation of human rights in Iraq submitted by the Special Rapporteur (E/CN.4/1992/31) and the conclusions and recommendations contained therein;

2. Expresses its strong condemnation of the massive violations of human rights, of the gravest nature, for which the Government of Iraq is responsible, in particular:

(a) Summary and arbitrary executions, orchestrated mass executions and burials, extrajudicial killings, including Political killings, in particular in the northern region of Iraq, in southern Shiah centres and in the southern marshes;

(b) Widespread routine practice of systematic torture in its most cruel forms, including the torture of children;

(c) Enforced or involuntary disappearances, routinely practised arbitrary arrest and detention, including of women and children, consistent and routine failure to respect due process and the rule of law;

(d) Hostage-taking and the use of persons as "human shields", a most grave and blatant violation of Iraq's obligations under international law;

(e) Suppression of freedom of thought, expression and association, violations of property rights;

3. Deplores the fact that the Government of Iraq has failed to comply with the terms of Security Council resolutions 706 (1991) and 712 (1991), and has thereby failed to provide the Iraqi population with access to adequate food and health care;

4. Calls upon the Government of Iraq to release immediately all persons arbitrarily arrested and detained, including Kuwaitis and nationals of other States;

5. Expresses its particular concern at the fact that the Special Rapporteur could find no reliable indication that the Government of Iraq has taken steps to ensure that there will be no further violations of human rights and concluded furthermore that meaningful improvement in the human rights situation in Iraq requires drastic changes in the conduct of government;

6. Calls once again upon the Government of Iraq, as a State party to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, as well as to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, to abide by its freely undertaken obligations under these Covenants and under other international instruments on human rights, and particularly to respect and ensure the rights of all individuals irrespective of their origin within its territory and subject to its jurisdiction;

7. Expresses its special alarm at the repressive policies and practices directed against the Kurds which resulted in the extermination of a part of this population and which continue to have an impact on the lives of the Iraqi people as a whole;

8. Expresses its deep concern at the repressive measures taken by the Government of Iraq against the Shiah communities, in particular the suppression of Shiah religious and cultural rights;

9. Strongly deplores the exceptionally grave human rights violations by the Government of Iraq in recent years, which in the Special Rapporteur's view demand an exceptional response in the form of sending to Iraq a team of human rights monitors;

10. Requests, therefore, the Special Rapporteur, in consultation with the Secretary-General, to develop further his recommendation for an exceptional response and to report thereon to the General Assembly at its forty-seventh session;

11. Urges the Government of Iraq to set up an independent commission of inquiry to look into the fate of tens of thousands of disappeared persons;

12. Regrets the failure of the Government of Iraq to provide satisfactory replies concerning the violations of human rights brought to the attention of the Special Rapporteur, and calls upon the Government to reply without delay in a comprehensive and detailed manner so as to enable the Special Rapporteur to formulate the appropriate recommendations to improve the human rights situation in Iraq;

13. Decides to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur for a further year as contained in Commission resolution 1991/74 and requests the Special Rapporteur in pursuing his mandate to visit again the northern area of Iraq, in particular;

14. Urges, therefore, the Government of Iraq to accord its full cooperation to the Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights, notably during his next visit to Iraq;

15. Requests the Special Rapporteur to submit an interim report on the human rights situation in Iraq to the General Assembly at its forty-seventh session and a final report to the Commission at its forty-ninth session;

16. Requests the Secretary-General to provide the Special Rapporteur with all the necessary assistance in performing his task.

17. Decides to continue its consideration of the situation of human rights in Iraq, under the present agenda item, at its forty-ninth session.

55th meeting
5 March 1992
[Adopted by 35 votes to 1,
with 16 abstentions. See chap. XII]
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