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GE. 07-14981 (R) 261207 271207


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Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 1.6.2


Implementation has not started. No action was taken to remove restrictions in National Press Laws or to harmonize the Press and Printed Publications Act 2004 with the Bill of Rights of the Interim Constitution.

2. HUMANITARIAN ACCESS
^

2.1 Protection of humanitarian workers from harassment and attack





Recommendation 2.1.1 Short term


Publicly express support for the role of humanitarian workers in providing life saving assistance to populations at risk.


Indicators: Public declaration made; no subsequent retraction.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 2.1.1


Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 21 August 2007


In March 2007, the State announced the implementation of a fast track policy in a Joint Communiqué with the United Nations which was signed by the Minister of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Furthermore, a General Procedures Directory and the Darfur Fast Track Annex which provided guidance on administrative procedures for NGOs working in Darfur, were endorsed by the Minister of State at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. An annual volunteer’s day was inaugurated on 11 June 2007 and the President of the Republic gave an address expressing the Sudan’s appreciation for the role played by donors and voluntary organizations in improving the humanitarian situation in Darfur. On the occasion of national volunteers’ day, the President of the Republic (by Presidential Decree No. 168 of 2007) awarded the medal of achievement to a number of national and foreign voluntary organizations (the United Nations Mine Action Office in the Sudan, the Murdi Relief Development organization, Medecins Sans Frontieres, the Sudanese Red Crescent Society and the Roots Organization for Development).


With regard to the preparation of areas for voluntary return, the Government is rehabilitating villages by building educational, health and security establishments following the model used for the villages of Kalmandu and Durayj. The Government’s efforts in regard to the voluntary return of displaced persons have seen 272,696 persons return to their villages, 150,788 of them in South Darfur (44 villages), 75,062 in North Darfur (31 villages) and 46,846 in West Darfur (127 villages).

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 2.1.1


As a general observation, although the number of incidents against humanitarian workers dropped when compared with data for the months of June to October 2006, the severity of these appeared to have been much higher for the same period in 2007. From June to October 2006, there were a total of 214 incidents on humanitarian workers and from June to October 2007, there were 168 incidents. The number of reported attacks on humanitarian workers and goods in Darfur by Government forces, SLA/MM or militia allied with the Government fell from 29 for the period June to October 2006, to 9 for the same months of 2007.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 2.1.1


Declaration made. No information on subsequent retraction.


Recommendation 2.1.2 Short term


Assist aid organizations and workers who have been forced to suspend their work to return to their work areas and ensure their security on return.


Indicator: Number of aid workers allowed to return.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 2.1.2


Written information submitted to the Special Rapporteur during her mission in Sudan from 25 July 2007 to 2 August 2007


The Order on the Facilitation of the Work of International Observers, adopted by the Director General in pursuance of the Police Forces Act of 1999, aims at updating the police associates on the work and functions of human rights international observers so as to facilitate their tasks and to ensure cooperation with them. The Order takes into account the SOFA signed between the Government of the Sudan and the UN and states that:


Police directors in the States shall take notice that UNMIS individuals shall respect all national laws and regulations organizing the work; provided that the immunities given to them under those respective agreements shall be observed.


The General Administration of Legal Affairs shall provide advice to all police associates, update them on the functions of human rights international observers and follow up the implementation process of the instructions given to them. This has been provided for in the Order of the Director General of the Police No. 59/2007 on the Facilitation of the work of international observers, 31st July 2007.


^ Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 21 August 2007


A mechanism was created in March 2007 to monitor inflows of humanitarian aid in accordance with the above mentioned Joint Communiqué signed between the Government of the Sudan and the United Nations. Two visits were paid to the states of Darfur, the first on 21 23 April 2007 and the second on 29 30 July 2007. Six meetings were held with foreign voluntary organizations. As a result, all obstacles on the ground were removed.


^ Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 18 September 2007


A high level committee jointly chaired by the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and the Deputy Representative of the Secretary General of the UN in the Sudan and composed of Government officials, UN and NGOs, and donors has been set up and meet on a monthly basis. A technical committee coordinates governmental humanitarian assistance and has visited Darfur 6 times. State level and local technical committees at field level were created.


There are 258 agencies active in Darfur involving 900 staff in 2003. In 2007, there were 15,853 workers in Darfur.


Regarding visas for humanitarian workers, the Sudanese Delegation assured the group of experts on Darfur that it did not have a single pending visa application. The joint committee is authorized to review any pending visa applications, but thus far, there have been none. In regard to the expulsions of certain humanitarian aid workers, the Government stated that it had its own reasons for these actions.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 2.1.2


As regards the implementation of the Joint Communiqué, the UN reported in November, that progress has been made so far in its implementation and, in general, a good working relationship between international NGOs and the HAC (Humanitarian Aid Commission of the Government of Sudan) in addressing bureaucratic procedures in Darfur has developed. Regarding visas for humanitarian workers, the Government assured the group of experts that it did not have a single case regarding pending visa applications. At the same time, the group learnt that the UN had received complaints alleging violations of the letter and spirit of the Joint Communiqué, in particular that the Government had refused to extend visas for some NGO expatriate staff to remain in the country. The UN reported in November that only 29% of the total procedures handled by the Joint Procedures Centre were resolved on schedule. In late August 2007, the Government of the Sudan expelled the Country Director of CARE, Paul Barker and in early November the head of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) for South Darfur, Wael al Haj Ibrahim. Mr. Ibrahim was reported to be the 11th aid worker expelled from Sudan since the beginning of this year.


As regards humanitarian access, the group received information that humanitarian services continued to be provided to the vast majority of conflict affected civilians. The WFP, for example, provided food to an average of 3.2 million people during the third quarter of 2007. However, the number of beneficiaries not reached rose from 60,000 in July to 122,000 in September. One reason for this was reportedly denial of access by the Government. In Nertiti (Jebel Marra), the Government Security Committee suspended all humanitarian movement into the SLA AW controlled areas of Golol and Kwilla in Jebel Marra as from 16 August 2007, officially due to security concerns. Several humanitarian interventions were denied by the authorities in the Jebel Marra, including an NGO emergency response in Guildo and Boldong, a polio and measles campaign in Kwilla, Kutrum and Boldong, a distribution of vaccines and seeds in Kutrum and the construction of four schools in the region. The suspension of humanitarian assistance to this area was of great concern in light of the substantial recent displacements that have taken place and the fact that it was the peak of the hunger and rainy season. Malnutrition has been rising rapidly in many areas in the Zalingei Corridor, including Nertiti. Water borne diseases and malnutrition as a result of the deteriorated sanitary conditions in the IDP camps due to heavy rains and overcrowded living conditions have been the foremost humanitarian concerns. In Jebel Marra, the Nertiti Security Committee’s decision on 16 August 2007 to ban all NGO movement into the Jebel Marra was loosened a little by allowing two NGOs to travel to the area in mid August 2007, but a third NGO was denied access. In August 2007, large parts of the Jebel Marra (West Darfur) was inaccessible despite promises by various Government authorities to revise the Nertiti Government security committee’s decision on 16 August to ban all NGO missions to the area.


Humanitarian access to an unknown number of displaced persons in the Adilla area of South Darfur following fighting between governmental and rebel forces in September continues to be denied despite various appeals from the humanitarian community.


In the first week of October 2007, Government rebel fighting intensified in the Haskanita area (North Darfur) with a major Government ground offensive backed by aerial bombardments against non signatory movements. Fighting between militias and the Government was also reported in the area. The area was virtually inaccessible for humanitarian workers as well as for AMIS, and little information was available on civilian casualties. Although an AMIS helicopter was allowed to re supply their base in Haskanita, Military Intelligence continued to deny humanitarian access to the new IDPs who were reported to be in dire need of humanitarian assistance. The Government allowed humanitarian access only one month after the events.


Following an attempted hijacking of an NGO vehicle near Al Salam camp (also near Nyala) on 16 September 2007 whereby the vehicle was shot at, humanitarian agencies have not re entered the camp awaiting the implementation of increased Government police patrols along the access route. All NGOs temporarily suspended activities in Al Salam camp (Nyala, South Darfur) after some armed men were seen entering the camp.


On 30 July, officials at the Government checkpoint near Zam Zam denied access to a UNMIS Human Rights team who were on their way to Zam Zam IDP camp for official travel with proper clearances and notification. The Government soldiers insisted that they should give a copy of the UNMIS internal travel authorization document which the team refused. The team returned to El Fasher.


Despite the Joint Communiqué signed in March 2007 on facilitation of humanitarian activities in Darfur, INGOs were still experiencing difficulties in obtaining authorization for working in Darfur. In North Darfur, staff members of an NGO continued to be denied access to As Salaam camp by HAC since 3 September 2007. On 23 September, authorities also denied an NGO a travel permit to Birmaza to collect their vehicle which had been hijacked on 16 September 2007 and later recovered.


In mid September 2007, humanitarian personnel continued to be victims of targeted attacks. Three humanitarian workers were abducted by SLA MM elements in Sarafaya (North Darfur) on 31 August and were released five days later. In addition, two humanitarian vehicles were hijacked in South Darfur, one of which in Kalma camp while another attempt in the same camp was thwarted. This week, armed men assaulted six humanitarian premises. Targeted attacks on humanitarian aid workers and their assets continued to negatively affect the humanitarian environment in Darfur. Two humanitarian vehicles were hijacked in the third week of September 2007 and one carjacking attempt was foiled in Mosai camp (South Darfur). From January to the end of September 2007, 92 humanitarian vehicles had been hijacked or stolen.


On 20 September 2007, armed men shot at a two vehicle NGO convoy near Bulbul Timbisco (South Darfur), hitting two staff members in the head and one in the arm. Fortunately, no one was killed. The NGO decided to relocate its staff members from Edd El Fursan to Nyala. A brutal assault by armed men on an NGO compound in Tawilla forced the NGO to relocate its staff for security reasons and suspend its activities in one of the few areas in North Darfur with a permanent humanitarian presence apart from El Fasher. Following an armed assault on an NGO convoy near Marla (South Darfur), the NGO suspended all its operations in the Manawashi Duma Marla area. This week, three NGO staff were wounded by gunshots, a total of four humanitarian vehicles were hijacked or stolen, two hijacking attempts failed, two convoys were ambushed, and one NGO compound broken into.


In the first week of October 2007, violent attacks against humanitarian workers and their assets continued at an alarmingly high rate. Four humanitarian vehicles were hijacked and one humanitarian convoy stopped and looted. One NGO driver was temporarily abducted during one of the hijacking incidents. In addition, three NGO staff members were abducted from their warehouse and held hostage for one day by armed nomads. In view of a threat of an imminent militia attack, one NGO relocated its staff from Seleah (South Darfur) to Nyala as a precautionary measure. On 16 October 2007, three contract truck drivers were shot to death while working for the WFP in Darfur. Two of the men died in South Darfur state on the road between the town of Ed Daien and the city of El Obeid. The men were returning to El Obeid after delivering supplies. In an earlier incident involving WFP, which took place on 12 October in South Darfur on the road between the state capital Nyala and the city of El Fasher, capital of North Darfur. some 25 bags of grain were looted from the truck.


In the period 15 21 October 2007, the security situation in South Darfur, particularly in Nyala town and some of the surrounding IDP camps, deteriorated significantly. Compared to August 2007, the incidents targeted at the UN and INGO staff increased by 100% in September 2007. The last two months were dominated by fifteen carjacking related incidents whereby nine vehicles were stolen at gun point and eight robbery incidents occurred during field missions. None of the vehicles have been recovered.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 2.1.2


Progress was reported in the implementation of the Joint Communiqué, an important step in itself, but humanitarian access remained difficult and often denied on the ground. Expulsions of high ranking aid workers were reportedly in violation of the letter and spirit of the Joint Communiqué.


Recommendation 2.1.3 Short term


Do not use any vehicle or aircraft markings that might blur the line between humanitarian operations and Government military operations.


Indicator: No such incidents reported.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 2.1.3


The Government rejected the allegations that it had blurred the line between humanitarian operations and Government military operations.

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 2.1.3


The Government appear to have made no efforts to distinguish military from humanitarian aircraft. Several reports since 2005 indicate that the Government used white aircrafts for military operations, with multiple purposes (reconnaissance, bombardments and logistical). Reports from AMIS stated that a Government MI 8 has been seen marked with an AMIS logo. More recently, there has been no reports of deceptive markings by the Government.


There have also been reports of the use of white vehicles by the Government. White vehicles stolen from international NGOs and the UN have been used frequently by militia groups. The use of such vehicles for military purposes reached a peak in the second half of 2006. The Government reported on an ambush on a Sudan Armed Forces convoy on 7 October 2007, where militia pretended to have a vehicle breakdown in order to trick the patrol into the ambush site. According to Government sources, the militia probably used a stolen white international NGO vehicle as bait.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 2.1.3


According to the information received from UN agencies, bodies and programmes operational in Darfur and AMIS, there have been no reported instances since 20 June 2007 of markings that blur the distinction between military and humanitarian operations.


Recommendation 2.1.4 Short term


Do not subject humanitarian workers to arbitrary detentions, physical abuse, sexual assaults, and harassment. Issue clear written instructions to instruct authorities at all levels, including military, and any militias under the Government’s control in this regard. Publish and widely disseminate these instructions.


Indicator: Instructions issued and widely disseminated. Number of reported incidents of harassment or attacks on humanitarian workers.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 2.1.4


Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 21 August 2007


The Director General of Police issued order 2007/59 concerning the facilitation of the work of international monitors, as described hereunder. State police chiefs must respect the immunities of members of the United Nations mission who in turn must respect all the laws and local regulations governing their work. The General Department of Legal Affairs must provide advice to all police personnel, inform them of the duties of international human rights monitors and follow up on the implementation of these instructions. The security services prepared a draft document, which was reviewed by the Advisory Council, spelling out the rights of arrested persons to notify their families of their place of detention, not to be held in incommunicado detention or to be subjected to acts harmful to their physical and mental health or torture and to be allowed family visits. The draft has been submitted to the director of the security services for approval.


The Sudanese Delegation considered that most of the incidents of car hijacking have been committed by non security forces. The Government stated that it established a joint committee to deal with the issue (UN, mix of Government agencies) a few months ago. One of the problems has been that those cases were not reported in time. In addition, when NGOs recruited staff, they did not monitor adequately the background of staff they recruited Within the past 5 6 months about 56 cars were returned proof that the mechanism was working. With respect to the arrest of the CARE director, the Delegation emphasised that the individual, not the organisation, was targeted, due to security concerns. The Government informed CARE about the full details on the reasons of this decision.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 2.1.4


Further violence targeting the humanitarian community has forced agencies to adapt their activities to mitigate attacks on their staff, in particular, forcing a much greater reliance upon air transport and “in and out” interventions. Attacks against the relief community increased by 150% over the past 12 months. In 2007, over 100 aid workers were temporarily abducted, 59 convoys have were attacked or looted, 57 humanitarian premises were invaded by armed men, and 88 humanitarian vehicles were hijacked. Leading NGOs withdrew from certain areas on 24 occasions, citing violence against aid workers. Daily attacks include assaults, banditry and other violence targeting aid workers.


The humanitarian response to current and new needs continued to be hampered by security incidents. During August 2007, seven humanitarian vehicles were hijacked or stolen, and four humanitarian convoys were attacked. Five humanitarians were kidnapped or abducted, and three were physically assaulted. In the first half of 2007, five aid workers were killed and 11 injured, while 53 others had been physically assaulted. Many areas of Darfur still remained a hostile environment for relief efforts. Humanitarian personnel had to relocate on 24 occasions, which hampered the delivery of aid to hundreds of thousands of intended beneficiaries. This had a direct and tangible impact on the quality and quantity of aid and resulted, in some cases, in the complete inability to reach those in need. During August 2007, humanitarian activities had to be suspended in several camps due to insecurity. All operations were suspended in Zalingei Camp (West Darfur) for two days, while Kalma camp (South Darfur) was closed to aid operations for three days. Humanitarian access, already hampered by ongoing violence, was further restricted by parties to the conflict. Several parts of the Jebel Marra area (West Darfur) were inaccessible to humanitarian agencies from 16 August 2007 onwards. The suspension of assistance in this area is of great concern, at a time when new displacements have taken place, given malnutrition and the onset of rainy season.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 2.1.4


Order 59/2007 refers only to UN personnel and does not explicitly address other humanitarian workers. The group of experts considers that Order 59/2007 was too vague to guide officials to respect the work and persons of humanitarian workers. The severity of reported incidents of harassment or attacks on humanitarian workers had increased from the beginning of January 2007 to the time of the writing of the present report.

^

2.2 Facilitating access to civilians, including those displaced





Recommendation 2.2.1 Short- and Mid term


Respect and fully implement the Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA), the Moratorium on Restrictions of Humanitarian Work in Darfur, agreed with the United Nations in 2004, and the Joint Communiqué between the Government of the Sudan and the Deputy SRSG on Facilitation of Humanitarian Activities in Darfur 2007.


Indicators: Number of instances of non compliance with the commitments made therein.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 2.2.1


See response of the Government on recommendations 2.1.1 and 2.1.2.

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 2.2.1


UN agencies, bodies and programmes operational in Darfur indicated to the group of experts that the Government had refused to extend stay visas for some NGO expatriate staff and that it had expelled the Country Director of CARE in August 2007, as well as the OCHA Head of Office for South Darfur during the first week of November 2007 contrary to the spirit and letter of the Joint Communiqué.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 2.2.1


The group of experts has become aware of a number of incidents of non compliance with the agreements indicated in the recommendation.


Recommendation 2.2.2 Mid term


Ensure that aid workers have access to people not only in camps but in remote villages that have been cut off from aid supplies by fighting.


Indicator: Percentage of areas under Government limit for international humanitarian organizations control being off limit for international humanitarian organizations.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 2.2.2


See response of the Government on recommendations 2.1.1 and 2.1.2.


According to the Government the population of Darfur is 675 0000, the number of affected persons and displaced persons is 210 0000, the number of displaced persons in camps 650 000, the number of camps is 21 and the number of communities of affected persons by area 38. The Government stated that humanitarian coverage is 100%.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 2.2.2


See ‘information received from other sources’ on recommendations 2.2.1, 2.1.2 and 2.1.4.

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 2.2.2


International NGOs and UN agencies, bodies and programmes operational in Darfur noted that there was no clear improvement in humanitarian access during the period under review.


Recommendation 2.2.3 Mid term


Reform the Organization of Voluntary and Humanitarian Work Act of 2006 so as to not restrict the work of groups through unnecessary procedural requirements confined definitions of what humanitarian organizations should do, and lack of judicial oversight of decisions by Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and HAC.


Indicator: Reformed in accordance with the Interim Constitution, the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Defenders and other relevant international standards.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 2.2.3


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 15 November 2007


The Government indicated that it was under an obligation to review the foreign funding of NGOs to ensure that all finances were disclosed publicly in line with international anti money laundering and anti corruption convention obligations.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 2.2.3


A Constitutional petition submitted by Sudanese NGOs was submitted to the Constitutional Court and was pending for almost a year at the time of the writing of the present report.

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 2.2.3


Recommendation 2.2.3 relating to reform of the NGO Act 2006 was not implemented.

^ 3. ACCOUNTABILITY AND JUSTICE




Recommendation 3.1 Short term


Carry out thorough investigations, in accordance with relevant international standards, into all reported cases of human rights abuses and breaches of international humanitarian law, including allegations of torture, violence against women, arbitrary detentions and killings, including incidents which have been reported publicly by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, in particular in the following cases:


  • Attacks in Bulbul area, South Darfur, in January March 2007 with involvement of Border Intelligence Guards and other Government forces.



  • Attacks on the village of Deribat and eight other villages along the road from Kutur to Deribat in late December 2006 with involvement of Government forces and allied militia.



  • Killing of civilians in the area of Buram, South Darfur, in October 2006.



  • Arrests of at least 19 Massalit men in Gereida, South Darfur, in September 2006 by soldiers of the Special Presidential Assistant and Chairman of the Transitional Darfur Regional Authority Minni Minnawi.



  • Attacks on villages around Jebel Moon area on 29 October 2006 and the failure of the Sudanese Armed Forces to prevent the attack or protect the population during the attacks.



  • Law enforcement operation on NGO compounds on 19 January 2007 in Nyala with 20 United Nations, NGO and AMIS staff arrested, physically and verbally abused, including 2 cases of sexual assault.



  • Attack on 4 NGO compounds in Gereida by SLD/Minni Minnawi forces on 18 December 2006 with 12 vehicles stolen and allegedly 7 aid workers raped.



Provide information on thorough and transparent investigations undertaken into the allegations of torture brought to the Government’s attention by the Special Rapporteur on torture; in particular those contained in the reports E/CN.4/2006/6/Add.1, and A/HRC/4/33/Add.1.


In cases where investigation committees were established, make public their findings. Take legal action against the perpetrators and especially against those with command responsibility. Immunities should be waived in such cases.


Take appropriate disciplinary action against police and other officials who fail in their primary responsibility to protect civilians. Compensate and rehabilitate victims.


Indicators: Number of investigations; Number of prosecutions; Number of convictions. Number of perpetrators, especially those with command responsibility prosecuted. Findings of investigation committees made public. Number of compensated and rehabilitated victims.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 3.1


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 18 September 2007


Regarding attacks on Deribat, the Government stated that a joint committee was set up, headed by joint forces, to investigate attacks. The battle took place between two factions of the SLA. Not a single unit from the Sudanese Armed Forces or the PDF were present. Certain members of liberation forces (followers of Abul Kassen) were questioned and he accused followers of Abdel Wahed to have committed rape. Some women were transferred to a place called al Nahoud on 5 September 2007. The Minister of Justice established a committee (under general prosecutor) to investigate the allegation that some women were transferred from one place to another, where they were used as sex slaves. The establishment of the committee has been published in a number of newspapers.


Regarding incidents that have taken place in Buram, on 25 August 2007 a group from the SLA attacked another group from Alhabanya. Two women were abducted. In reaction, a group from this tribe attacked another village, because they believed that the two SLA members came from this village. Mediation was organised between the 2 tribes. AMIS observed that the area was controlled by rebel groups. Complaints were filed by both tribes against each other, but the investigation into these incidents remains ongoing.


Regarding attacks on a camp of the NGO compound in Nyala, a complaint was filed by a number of people due to certain illegal practices and police forces arrested suspects. It was revealed that some UN staff and AU staff were among the accused. The Government prosecuted some Sudanese nationals and released the international staff.


^ Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 30 October 2007


On 30 October 2007, the Government provided information on the accountability and justice investigation committee in Deribat through the submission of a number of documents. The group of experts also received materials relating to an investigation committee on the events in Masara (South Darfur) as well as on an investigation committee on Alhabaniya and Al Falata, South Darfur.


These reports can be summarized as follows:


1. The Investigation Committee on Dyribat event submitted a letter to the Attorney General on 25/10 2007 entitled ‘the Investigation Committee of abducted women in Derbat’. The Head of the Committee, Mr. Ahmed Ali updated the Attorney General on the work of the Committee. He confirmed that the Committee held a meeting on 11 of September 2007 and the committee studied the UN report. The Representative of the Commission of the Violence against Women was delegated to prepare a report on cases of attacked women in the area. On the 13 September the Committee held a second meeting and concluded that the Deribat area was still under rebel control and that no charges had been brought by the women against any individual. Also, the rebels attacked the armed forces before while wearing SAF uniform which lent the impression that members of the Government forces were responsible. As the Deribat area was under the rebel control, the Committee decided to contact the UN and AMIS for coordination so that the Committee would be in a position to reach the Deribat area and initiate its investigation.


2. Investigation Committee on the Events of Masara  South Darfur State was formed by a decision by the Wali (decision 75) for 2006 and was issued on 24/10/2005. The Committee composed from representatives of the Attorney General, the Police, the National Security, the Military Intelligence. The Committee will investigate the attack committed by an armed group in the morning of 23/10/2007 which caused considerable loss of life (60 dead and 8 injured). The mandate of the Committee was to assess the human and material losses. Three accused were arrested and convicted by the criminal court and punished by imprisonment. However, the main perpetrators were not arrested. The committee recommended to compensate the victims and secure their safe return to their areas. Also recommended establishing a reconciliation and development committee from the tribes in the area and to set up a mechanism for settlement of disputes.


3. Investigation Committee on the Events of Alhabania and FALATA  South Dafur. This committee was formed by the Wali on 7 January 2007 and composed of representatives from the Attorney General, the Police, the National Security, and Military Intelligence. The mandate of the Committee was to conduct investigations into events that occurred in Buram and Tls localities, listening to witnesses and asses the human and material loses. The Committee established that 100 persons were killed from the Habania tribe and 25 from the Falata tribe. The Committee recommended the establishment of joint forces to cover the area. Some individuals were arrested accused of killing and aiding and abetting commission the crime of killing.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 3.1


The above reports did not address all of the cases indicated in recommendation 3.1. The Government indicated that the work of certain investigation committees was continuing and that it could provide a report once these investigations were complete. These incidents need to be investigated as required in the recommendation. The reports provide few names of those who are arrested but do not show individuals who suppose to be prosecuted or convicted. Also no information was provided with regard to perpetrators, especially those with command responsibility. Also, findings of investigation committees were not made public. Only one Committee recommended that victims are to be compensated in Masara  South Darfur State. During the period under review, the human rights team in North Darfur monitored nine cases against military soldiers and one case against a SLA soldier in the El Fasher regular courts. In Kabkabiya, the UN followed three cases against soldiers for an attack committed in 2001. With the exception of this last case, all the other cases related to personal crimes and were not committed in the course of the conflict. In the case against the SLA soldier, accused of armed robbery allegedly committed on 5 April 2007, the conviction was overturned because the judiciary was implementing a policy of not charging SLA/MM soldiers with possession of illegal weapons, recognizing that faction’s status as a signatory to the DPA.


In SLA/MM controlled areas, the problems were even more severe. The system relied on legal advisors that are very poorly trained and who interpreted and applied procedures differently across SLA/MM controlled areas. Although SLA/MM authorities claimed that they followed Sudanese criminal laws, there were numerous reported cases of disregard for basic fair trial standards, ill treatment while in detention, and the use of the justice system to extort money. A typical problem observed in the SLA/MM administered areas was the detention of individuals as a means of pressuring their families to pay a fine. People were often held indefinitely with no charges pending against them. For example, during a routine visit to an SLA/MM detention facility in Kafod, in North Darfur, on 21 August 2007, UN staff interviewed two men, one of them 73 years of age, who had been detained since 26 July 2007 in connection with a murder case allegedly committed by one of his relatives. The two complained that they had not been charged with any crime and could not raise the money required to pay for the agreed settlement while still in detention.


As regards the Investigation Committees, despite the Government’s stated commitment to end impunity, and the establishment of a number of mechanisms to address crimes in Darfur, very little progress and results have been achieved. During the reporting period, the Special Criminal Court for Events in Darfur (SCCED), which was set up in mid 2005, did not hear any new cases.


With regard to investigatory committees, for which records were not made available to HROs, in South Darfur the prosecutor and the police showed cooperation and provided information on progress achieved. In West Darfur, the UN also was able to obtain information on the committee investigating attacks on Jebel Moon in October 2006.


UN staff did not receive information on any conclusion reached by investigative committee on the attacks in the Bulbul area in January   March 2007, or any prosecution made with regard to the case.


UN staff learnt from the Head of the Unit of combating Violence against Women and Children (Dr. Atiat), during her visit to Nyala in August 2007, that the Ministry of Justice was going to investigate the December 2006 incidents in Deribat. However, to date no investigation seems to have been carried out.


There are no updates on the killing of civilians in the area of Buram, South Darfur, in October 2006.


Regarding the arrests and disappearance of at least 19 Massalit men in Gereida, in September 2006, the SLA/MM stated that they would investigate the incident, but no action has yet been taken in that regard. Moreover, SLA/MM has denied any responsibility over the incident.


The Governor of West Darfur indicated that he had established a committee to investigate the attacks on villages around Jebel Moon area on 29 October 2006 so to prevent similar events in the future. A group of state authorities visited Silea on 1 November 2006, conducted a preliminary investigation, and established an investigatory committee, including community representatives from the affected villages. No report has been made public by state authorities regarding any outcome of this investigation and no one was brought to justice in connection with the attacks.


Regarding the law enforcement operation on NGO compound on 19 January 2007, in Nyala: In a court hearing on 5 April 2007, six INGO staff members were found guilty of drinking alcohol and nuisance (article 78, 2 of Criminal Act 1991) and were ordered to pay a fine of 25000 SD each. On 16 April 2007, the court decided to acquit another two international NGO staff members due to the lack of evidence with regard to the same charges. However, one of those two acquitted, a Sudanese female, was still being investigated for indecent and immoral acts, under article 152 of the Criminal Act 1991. To date, no legal procedures had been taken against her in that case. An international staff member, who left Sudan upon completion of his contract, also had been accused in the same case. On 19 April 2007, the Nyala court decided to acquit five UN staff, who had been charged with drinking alcohol and nuisance, based on the SOFA. In the same hearing, with regard to the remaining defendants from international NGOs, the magistrate in the case stated that “the procedures of their surety were illegal because the person who guaranteed them is a UN staff and the court could therefore not apply the rules against him. He has failed to bring the defendants before the court”. In its decision, the court ruled that for these accused, the case will be ‘closed temporarily” and the prosecution would resume the procedures against them in case they returned to Sudan. The group of experts did not receive any information as to whether the allegations of physical and verbal abuse, including sexual assault, reported to have been perpetrated by law enforcement officers during the arrests, were being investigated.


Full and thorough investigations into breaches of international human rights and humanitarian law with regard to the following incidents seem not to have been undertaken: the attacks in Bulbul area, South Darfur in January   March 2007; the attacks on the village of Deribat and eight villages along the Kutur to Deribat road in late December 2006; the killing of civilians in the Buram area of South Darfur in October 2006; the arrest of at least 19 Massalit men in Gereida, South Darfur in September 2006; the attacks on villages around the Jebel Moon area in October 2006; law enforcement operation on NGO compounds on 19 January 2007 in Nyala; and the attack on 4 NGO compounds in Gereida by SLA/MM forces in December 2006.


In some instances, the Government publicly announced its intention to investigate reports of widespread human rights violations large scale attacks, but it has failed to follow through with these pledges. In other cases, where investigation committees have been established to address the incidents in question, their findings have not been made public.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 3.1


According to information received, this recommendation has not been fully implemented. Limited investigations were conducted into three incidents: attacks in Bulbul area, South Darfur, attacks on the village of Deribat and eight other villages along the road from Kutur to Deribat in late December 2006, and into killing of civilians in the area of Buram, South Darfur, in October 2006. In the Buram case prosecutions were ongoing at the time of the writing of the present report, but no perpetrators had actually been prosecuted. No information was provided on the cases of torture brought to the Government’s attention by the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. No information has been received on any disciplinary action against police and other officials who failed in their primary responsibility to protect civilians. No information was provided on compensation and rehabilitation of victims.


Recommendation 3.2 Short term


Ensure that there are no laws that provide legal immunities for state agents for human rights violations; in particular, repeal article 33 National Security Forces Act of 1999 (criminal and civil immunity), and article 46 of the 1999 Police Forces Act (immunity for police on official duty).As long as immunity laws are in force, the responsible authorities should issue a blanket waiver for immunities for war crimes and crimes involving torture, violence against women, arbitrary detention, enforced and arbitrary disappearances and extrajudicial killings in Darfur or in relation to the situation in Darfur.


Indicators: Legal immunities for armed state agents abolished. Blanket waiver issued.
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Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 3.2


Written information submitted to the Special Rapporteur during her mission in Sudan from 25 July 2007 to 2 August 2007


The Order of the Director General of the Police No. 57/2007, adopted in pursuance of the Police Forces Act of 1999, for the purpose of organizing the procedures of granting authorization to prosecute police personnel, to ensure speedy legal procedures in prosecuting the same, and to prevent immunities granted to perpetrators among police personnel was adopted on 31 July 2007. The Order organizes the granting authorisations procedures as follows:


With regard to a crime committed by a police member, the Police shall conduct an investigation parallel to that carried out by the prosecution. Upon submission of the request to grant authorization to the Ministry of Justice, investigation procedures should be put forward to the Directorate General of Legal Affairs to ensure availability of initial proof against the police member. The Directorate General of Legal Affairs shall submit authorization to prosecute the police member before ordinary courts upon fulfilment of all legal aspects according to the jurisdiction; otherwise the police member shall be referred to a special police court. If the request is rejected, the police member shall be referred to a special police court subject to a notification forwarded to the Ministry of Justice as well as to the complainant. The Directorate General of Legal affairs shall ensure that the complaint enjoys his/her right of prosecution as well as the right to appeal before police courts. A monthly report shall be prepared on cases considered before police courts since a request of authorization has been rejected taking into consideration that the Ministry of Justice shall be briefed of the decision of the court.


Instructions from the Director General of NISS: Pursuant to article 73 of the National Security Forces Act of 1999, as amended in 2004, and further to the memorandum of understanding between the Government of the Sudan and the Experts Group established pursuant to Human Rights Council decision No. 4/8, concerning the commitment of the Sudan to the implementation of human rights standards and principles and of international humanitarian law, I, the Director General of NISS do hereby issue the following instructions:


If a member of the security services breaches any of the laws in force and there is prime facie evidence to justify the laying of charges against him, the security services must surrender the individual for trial or try him before a permanent security court, which must not be a summary court, as the law decrees.


Compliance with circular and implementation of instructions: The present instructions shall be circulated to all security units and national intelligence units and all members of the security services shall comply with and implement them. Anyone who breaches them shall be prosecuted and punished in the manner provided for by law.


^ Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 18 September 2007


Regarding immunities, the Delegation clarified that there was no law providing for an immunity related to members for armed forces. A Criminal Circular issued by the Chief Justice sets out the various legal proceedings regarding prosecution of members of the Sudanese Armed Forces. As for the police forces, an article in the police code provides for the immunity of police officers in the course of his or her duties. However, where a police officer has been accused of committing a crime in the course of his official duty, the State shall institute legal proceedings according to Article 47 (primary procedures). The Ministry of Interior can lift the immunity of police officers and then the judicial process follows its course according to which police officers can be charged as may be appropriate. The Government emphasised that police immunity was crucial to the police carrying out their official duties. The Government was in the process of revising the police code and the national security law, based on the new Constitution. New draft laws were under ongoing discussion. The Government intends to revise laws according to the following considerations: the need to prosecute any person committing a crime without any impediment; the need to protect police officers from groundless accusations at the same time; and the need to protect the morale of police forces in context of insecurity.


On police and national security, the law provides that where a police officer commits a crime on official duty, he or shall enjoy immunity, but the immunity has to be and can be lifted in order for such police officer to be prosecuted.


^ Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 15 November 2007


The Police Bill 2007 and the SAF Bill 2007 were received from the Government on 9 November 2007 and the Government provided further explanations of these bills to the group on 15 November 2007.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 3.2


The two Drafts of the Police Bill and the SAF Bill provide legal immunities for state agents. Both laws shall be subject to legal reform and harmonization with international human rights standards and the Bill of Rights of the Interim constitution of the Republic of the Sudan 2005.


Article 45 of the Police draft Bill (formerly Article 46 of the Police Forces Bill) was taken verbatim and maintains the same immunities for the Police. The Article forbids any ‘criminal procedure against a police officer accused of an incident representing a criminal offence committed while performing his official duty or because of his official act’ unless approved by the Minister or his delegate. This replicates Article 46 of the 1999 Act. In principle, police officers remain subject to national law. Whenever there is information that an infraction may amount to a criminal offence, the alleged offence should be reported immediately to the appropriate investigation and prosecution authorities. If there is information that a criminal offence has been committed but the criminal investigation authorities find that there is not enough evidence to charge the suspected officer, he or she may still be subjected to disciplinary procedures. Thus, a distinction has to be made for normal disciplinary procedures and acts of criminality which entails criminal investigation. In other words, misconduct involving criminal offences should be dealt with under criminal law all other misconduct can be dealt with under disciplinary proceedings. Article 45 represents one of the impunity clauses protecting the police. It also raises an accountability issue. Accountability to oversight institutions, which may include courts, legislatures, media and complaint review boards, is an important underpinning of democratic policing. Individual officers at all hierarchical levels not only accountable to their supervisors for their own conduct but their conduct must accord to with the national law and with professional codes of ethnics and discipline. In the case of criminal conduct all officers shall be accountable to the court. Article 45 not only raises the issue of criminal conduct of police and immunity from persecution, but also internal mechanisms of accountability of police Managers or Ministers.


The Sudanese Armed Forces Draft Bill, 2007 Article 34 (Institution of Legal Proceedings against personnel) provides that:


1) There shall not be deemed an offence any act, which emanates from any officer, or soldier in good faith, in the course, or by reason of performing the business of his/her post, or discharge of any duty imposed thereon, or any act done thereby, under any power delegated, or conferred thereon, under the Criminal Procedure Act, or any other law in force, any regulations or orders made under any one of them.


2) No proceedings shall be taken against any officer, or soldier, who commits an act, which constitutes an offence, which occurs in the course, or by reason of his/her discharge of his/her duties, or carrying out of any lawful order, issued thereto in this capacity thereof, and he/she shall not be tried, save upon permission, issued by the President of the Republic, or whoever he may authorize.

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Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 3.2


Legal immunities (recommendation 3.2) have not been abolished, although the Government has taken a number of steps to establish procedures for lifting immunities with regard to the police and the National Intelligence and Security Services. The pending Bills on the Armed Forces and the Police will not change the discretionary nature of decisions to lift immunities even in cases of serious violations of human rights. In particular, it took note of Art. 34 of the Sudanese Armed Forces Bill provides that no act shall be deemed an offence which emanates from any officer or soldier in good faith, in the course or by reason of performing the business of his/her post, or discharging any duty imposed upon him or her. The bill provides that immunity can only be waived by the President or someone designated by him if offences were committed in the course of discharging duties or carrying out of any lawful order. This system would, in practice, provide very far reaching immunity in cases where human rights violations were committed as part of carrying out an order by a competent authority.


Recommendation 3.3 Short term


Fully cooperate with the International Criminal Court mandated by the Security Council to investigate and prosecute international crimes committed in Darfur.


Indicator: Number of alleged perpetrators of international crimes committed in Darfur handed over to the International Criminal Court.
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Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 3.3


The Government indicated that it did not consider that the International Criminal Court had jurisdiction over the situation in Sudan.

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 3.3


The Government of Sudan has refused to cooperate with the ICC and has not complied with the arrest warrants issued for Ali Muhammad Ali Abd Al Rahman (“Ali Kushayb”) and Ahmad Muhammad Harun (“Ahmad Harun”).

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 3.3


Not implemented.


Recommendation 3.4 Short term and Mid term


Start to review the compatibility of domestic legislation with the interim national constitution and bill of rights, and harmonize laws with Sudan’s obligations under international human rights law. Undertake legal reform to include, especially, National Security Act, Police Act, Emergency Laws, Armed Forces Act.


Indicator: Number of laws reformed in accordance with international human rights law.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 3.4


Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 25 and 29 October 2007


On 25 October 2007, the group received a copy of the Armed Forces Bill of 2007 which deals, among others, the system of military justice, military criminal procedure, including investigation, inquiry and trial, conforming with the recognized principles of justice, public law and the principle of legality. The principle of independence of military judicature has been enshrined, by dedication of a full chapter, which deals with independence of the judicial and legal work, without influence, and deals with procedural immunities suitable for officers of the Military Judicature. Chapter VIII relates to penalties under courts martial, and Chapter I, of Part III sets out offences and contraventions, committed by personnel of the Armed Forces. This Act contains, for the first time, a codification of the provisions of the international humanitarian law, after a careful study of the regional experiences represented in the Jordanian Act, No. 31 and 32, 2003 and the Yemenese law; and after perusal of the international experience, represented in the Belgian model. The Bill keeps pace generally with the pattern of military law in the USA, France, Algeria and elsewhere, and conforms with the four Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the Additional Protocols to the Geneva Conventions of 1977, as well as the Optional Protocol attached to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child in that it fixes the recruitment age at 18 years. There are also principles of customary international law reflected in the Bill concerning prohibited weapons and protection of non combatants, and including the provisions of Ottawa Agreement for Prohibition of Use, Transport, Production and Storage of Anti Personnel Land Mines, 1997, and the Agreement of Combating Chemical Weapons, and criminalizing all acts prohibited in international laws, treaties and agreements, applying the principle of the domestic incorporation of international jurisdiction.


The group received the Police Forces Bill of 2007, Chapter II of which deals with general principles and objectives regulating the work and professional duties of police officers and specifically relating to the rule of law and human rights. Chapters IX and X deal with the operation of police courts, as well as offences, contraventions and punishment of police officers in case of violation of professional duties.


See also information provided by the Government and other sources as well as the assessment with respect to recommendation 3.1 and 3.2.

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Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 3.4


The harmonization of the Sudanese domestic legislation with the Interim National Constitution (INC) and bill of rights has been progressing very slowly.

National Security Act

The National Security bill was submitted to the Ministry of Justice, after having been drafted by a Committee, which included SPLM security experts. However, in a progressive report on CPA implementation, issued by the Presidency in September, it was stated that consultations were still underway between the NCP and the SPLM; that a Deputy Director for NISS had been appointed by the SPLM; and that 107 SPLM officers had been integrated into NISS after appointment by the Presidency.

^
Organization of Voluntary and Humanitarian Work Act of 2006

No developments in the case submitted by a group of NGOs to the constitutional court (case No. 35 2006).

National Police Act

No progress.

Armed Forces Act

The draft bill was tabled before the National Assembly after approval by the Council of Ministers.

^
Child Act

The new Child Act has yet to be passed although at the time of writing of the present report, it had already been finalized by the Legal Reform Committee and forwarded to the Council of Ministers for approval. Three meetings were organized by the Ministry of Religious Guidance during the month of September 2007 to discuss the draft Child Act. The meetings involved a number of religious leaders and the members of the Legislation Committee. The Committee has been formed to review the new Act, in particular those which have been considered by religious leaders to contradict Sharia law. UNICEF is a member of this Committee.

^
Emergency laws

No information on any attempts to review these laws.

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 3.4


Partial implementation with regard to the introduction of a Police Bill, 2007, and an Armed Forces Bill, 2007, which were pending in Parliament at the time of the writing of the present report.


Recommendation 3.5 Mid term


Ensure the effective functioning of judicial and legislative oversight mechanisms. Ensure there are sufficient numbers, resourced, and trained prosecutors to meet the demands of justice in all three Darfur States.


Ensure that the law enforcement and the judiciary in Darfur is adequately financed, reformed in accordance with international standards and staffed with professionals.


Indicator: Judicial and oversight mechanisms in place. Number of resourced and trained prosecutors in the three Darfur states. Number of resourced and trained police in Darfur. Action taken to reform law enforcement and the judiciary in accordance with international standards.
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Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 3.5


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 15 November 2007


The Ministry of Justice sent 21 criminal investigators to each of the states of Darfur and opened new prosecutors’ offices in area where they had not existed previously to improve access to justice.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 3.5


The shortcomings of the Sudanese administration of justice system have been documented and reported extensively. One of the main impediments for victims to access justice relates to an overall lack of sufficient judicial personnel. Despite an increase during 2007 in the number of prosecutors deployed to major towns in all Darfur States, in many areas the prosecutor’s office continued to lack resources and to be inaccessible to civilians. In West Darfur, on a positive note, there have been some improvements in the rule of law. In June 2007, the court in Foro Baranga reopened. The court had been closed since December 2006, when members of the CRP opened fire in the court and threatened a judge who had tried the case of a CRP member. Further, still in June 2007, the number of prosecutors deployed to West Darfur increased significantly to 13. Three of these prosecutors were deployed outside El Geneina and Zalengei to Foro Baranga, Garsila and Nertiti. Similarly, prosecutors were also deployed in North Darfur, namely in Kutum, Kabkabya, Melit and Um Kadada, and in South Darfur, in Rehad el Birdi, Buram, Edd el Fursan, El Daein, Adila and Kass.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 3.5


The Government seems to have drafted a number of bills that would increase judicial oversight. The Government indicated it was taking steps to deploy an increased number of prosecutors.

4. MONITORING OF IMPLEMENTATION OF RECOMMENDATIONS




Recommendation 4.1 Short term


Establish a National Human Rights Forum where relevant members of the international community, including the United Nations, and the Government can openly discuss human rights issues, concerns, trends, recommendations, and actions taken by the Government on specific cases and more generally to improve the human rights situation in Darfur.


Indicator: National Human Rights Forum established and functioning.
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Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.1


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 18 September 2007


There has been a recent agreement with UNMIS to set up new forum to discuss human rights issues related to Darfur. The competence to take this decision lies with the central authorities in Khartoum and it has not yet been carried out.

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Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.1


The Sub Joint Implementation Mechanism on Protection and Human Rights (Sub JIM) met in July 2007 for the first time in over a year.

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.1


At the time of the writing of the present report, there was insufficient information on the actual functioning of the above captioned Sub JIM.


Recommendation 4.2 Short term


Give the United Nations human rights monitors full access to the investigation records, allow them to interview victims in private, and brief them on at least monthly basis on progress made in each investigation.


Indicator: UN Human Rights monitors granted full access to the investigation records, allowed to interview victims in private, and provided monthly reports on progress made in each case.
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Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.2


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 18 September 2007


These UN human rights officers have full access to the whole of Darfur, other than detention centres which require a specific authorisation. No complaint on access has been received. As said in last response, Sudanese law prohibits any person from viewing documents of any investigation until charges have been made (applicable to any Sudanese as well): But once charge is made, HR monitors can have access to any document.

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Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.2


UN human rights officers continued to be refused unfettered and unimpeded access to detention facilities. In mid October 2007, the Advisory Council on Human Rights sent a letter to the Director of UNMIS HR inviting UN human rights officers to visit all detention facilities in Darfur, so as to respond positively to a recommendation by the group of experts. On 24 October 2007, the human rights team presented this letter to the Director General of Prisons in Darfur, requesting access to Shalla prison, in El Fasher. The Director General stated that he thought that the letter was ‘irrelevant’ as it had not been issued by the Minister of Interior. According to the Director, the request submitted by the human rights team to him has to be sent to Khartoum, directed at the Office of the Commissioner General of Prisons. If he agrees, he could then pass it on to the Office of the Director General of Police, who in turn, if he approves it, could decide to pass it on finally to the Minister of Interior. The Minister would have ultimate authority whether or not to approve a request to visit Shalla prison. In any case, it should be noted that the letter does not grant UN human rights officers free access to detention facilities only in Khartoum, but it seems that many Darfurians have been held in connection with Darfur related events in Khartoum, and with regard to whom allegations of ill treatment have been corroborated by the Khartoum human rights team.


West Darfur


Access to detention facilities in west West Darfur was further reduced during the period under review, in particular since September 2007. Detainees in remand by the courts were detained in the West Darfur State Prison at Ardamata, in El Geneina. Since early 2006, when the Ministry of Interior issued an order forbidding foreign organizations access to detention facilities under the Ministry of the Interior without the personal authorization of the Minister of the Interior, UN human rights officers have not been able to conduct general visits to Ardamata Prison. However, they remained able to visit named individual pre trial detainees through an established procedure whereby a prosecutor authorized the visit. UN human rights officers were able to carry out private interviews with these detainees.


In September 2007, the Head of the West Darfur State Prisons Department refused all access by UN human rights officers to Ardamata Prison without prior authorization from the Minister of the Interior. On 12 September 2007, HROs in El Geneina sought and obtained authorization from the West Darfur State Prosecutor to visit a pre trial detainee held in Ardamata Prison. On 16 September a UN human rights officer requested the prison director to allow him to visit the detainee on the basis of this authorization. The director refused access and referred the human rights officer to the Director of the West Darfur State Prisons Department. In a meeting with the officer, the director of the Prisons Department stated that UN human rights officers had to obtain authorization from the Ministry of the Interior before making any visit to the prison. The officer explained that in the past the human rights team had been visiting pre trial detainees after obtaining permission from the prosecutor. However, the director insisted that prior authorization must be obtained from the Ministry itself.


Access to the military intelligence detention facility in Geneina, as to military intelligence detainees in other parts of west West Darfur detainees was equally limited. Similarly, access to NISS facilities in El Geneina and in all localities in the western part of West Darfur have also been restricted. From the beginning of September 2007, UN human rights officers had very limited access to the facility in El Geneina. UN human rights officers were able to visit the facility, but prevented from interviewing detainees in private. When permission to undertake private interviews with detainees was sought in late September 2007, the NISS director for Geneina office stated he would need to obtain permission from his supervisor; his supervisor subsequently indicated that he would need similar permission from NISS in Khartoum.


On a positive note, human rights officers were granted access to the Zalingei Big prison on 19 September, 27 September and 1 October, after more than 15 months of refusal. Human rights officers were able to conduct unsupervised interviews with detainees and were granted access to the register and individual files. Findings from that assessment demonstrated that none of inmates was detained in relation to violations committed in the context of the conflict of Darfur.


North Darfur


Generally, UN human rights officers were able to conduct interviews with detainees, though not always in private. The situation in El Fasher was however completely different. UN human rights officers have not had access to Shalla prison, with over 400 detainees, or Kherkhaniga women’s prison since mid 2006. Authorities have made it clear that unfettered monitoring visits were not possible. The human rights team in El Fasher was in the process of requesting the Director of Prisons for North Darfur permission for the team to visit a specific detainee at Shalla prison.


Access in SLA/MM administrated areas was generally granted. During the period under review, UN human rights officers were able to visit SLA/MM detention facilities in Kafod, Muzbat, Wada’ah, Dar el Salaam, Shangil Tobayi and Zamzam. In the past, UN human rights officers were routinely granted access to Thabit prison, but these visits have been restricted for some time on grounds of security.


Regarding official records, UN human rights officers had only sporadic access to police registers. Some police officers have told UN human rights officers that they could not share case numbers or any details about cases, while other police have allowed UN human rights officers to read directly from their case registers. UN human rights officers in North Darfur had access to documents from the judiciary, such as statistics and copies of official decrees. However, case decisions were not available, except through lawyers involved in the case.


South Darfur


UN human rights officers in South Darfur were allowed to carry out monthly visits to the NISS detention facility in Nyala and to conduct unsupervised interviews with detainees. After the visit, UN human rights officers were requested to provide feedback on findings to NISS officers. Access to military intelligence facilities on the other hand was denied. With regard to state run prison and police cells, UN human rights officers used to enjoy a certain degree of access. However, UN human rights officers received information that new instructions have been recently issued by Ministry of Interior in Khartoum, requiring his approval before access can be provided to the state run prison. Concerning access to police cells, UN human rights officers have had access upon approval by the State Prosecution Office, although authorization was often difficult to obtain.


As in North Darfur, access to SLA/MM detention facilities was easier. UN human rights officers were able to visit regular detention facilities in Muhajiria and Gereida. Although visits were usually unsupervised, prior approval from SLA/MM office in Nyala was required. However, UN human rights officers have not had much access to Military Intelligence or NISS facilities, or to visit political detainees who, in many cases, have been moved frequently from one facility to the other.

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Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.2


The group of experts welcomes the issuance of orders facilitating cooperation with United Nations human rights officers, but regrets that implementation of these orders has been very problematic.


Recommendation 4.3 Short term


Grant the United Nations human rights monitors full and unimpeded access to all those detained in Darfur or in other parts of the Sudan in relation to the Darfur conflict, including national security installations and military bases. Make a public declaration that full and unimpeded access has been granted and send a written order to all authorities to grant access.


Indicator: Number of reported incidents of non access.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.3


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 18 September 2007


Concerning detention cases: Not all police officers know that UN human rights officers have specific rights. In some visits, human rights officers did not follow standard procedures (e.g. they had other people with them. When Sudan allowed surprise visits, many practical problems were encountered, and so surprise visits have been stopped, which is why they cannot go ahead any longer without specific authorisation. Henceforth, applications will be automatically approved, but the Government requires notice in order to approve and facilitate the visit.


^ Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 25 October 2007


The group of experts received from the Government a copy of a letter sent to the Director of UNMIS HR which invited UN human rights officers to visit all detention facilities in Darfur.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.3


According to UNMIS input, the Ministry of Interior has not revoked its March 2006 order prohibiting access to detention facilities in Darfur and other parts of Sudan by human rights monitors. Limited access has however been granted in certain areas on an ad hoc basis depending on the rapport between the local officials and human rights monitors. See further information ‘received from other sources’ on recommendation 4.2.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.3


Some steps have been taken towards implementation, but actual access was still impeded at the time of the writing of the present report.


Recommendation 4.4 Short term


Issue a standing invitation to all human rights mechanisms (whether standing or ad hoc) of the United Nations and the African Union to investigate the situation in Darfur and give these mechanisms full and unimpeded access to the Darfur region. Respond to all communications regarding cases addressed to the Government by special procedures of the United Nations.


Indicator: Standing invitation extended no subsequent obstructions of full and unimpeded access. Number of responses received.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.4


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 15 November 2007


The Government indicated that special procedures were welcome in the Sudan.

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.4


No standing invitation was received.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.4


The recommendation was not implemented.


Recommendation 4.5 Mid term


Set up systems for documentation and recording of violations of human rights and ensuring access for human rights defenders to this information. Ensure the effective functioning of documentation centers within the human rights units of the Ministries of the Interior, Defence, Welfare and others.


Indicator: Systems in place and documentation centres functioning effectively.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.5


No information provided.

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.5


There has been no information received to indicate whether or not such centers have been established.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.5


No implementation.


Recommendation 4.6 Mid term


Evaluate, together with the United Nations, the functioning of the State Committees to Combat Violence Against Women, the implementation of their work plans as well as the implementation of the National Action Plan.


Indicator: Evaluation conducted and made public.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.6


Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 13 November 2007


On 13 November 2007, the group of experts received from the Government a Report of the Joint Task Force Team assigned to appraise the work of the State Committees to Combat Violence against Women in Darfur, providing details of the composition of this mechanism as well as its assessment of progress made and recommendations.


^ Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 15 November 2007


The Government stated that a joint task force visited Darfur and recommended that training be undertaken to raise the level of professionalism on the part of the members of state committees which have been formed to combat violence against women.

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Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.6


On 12 August 2007, a Joint Task Force for supporting and evaluating the work of the State Committees was constituted under the auspices of the Ministry of Justice. The Task Force is chaired by the Director of the Unit for Combating Violence against Women and Children, and includes representatives of the Advisory Council for Human Rights, Ministry of Health, Ministry of Interior, Humanitarian Aid Commission, Ministry of the Social Welfare and Sudanese Women’s Union, as well as of UNMIS Human Rights, UNMIS Gender and UNFPA. The 12 August decision, signed by the Under Secretary of the Ministry of Justice, outlines the Task Force’s terms of reference as follows: to have regular six months joint visits to the three Darfur States; to review the achievement in the implementation of the previous Plan of Action; to needs assessment for the new Plans; to review the challenges facing the progress of the work [of the State Committees]; to identify gaps and needs; to make suggestions for joint technical and financial support according to needs; to prepare a report every six months.


A smaller group withdrawn from the Task Force and composed of the Chair, two members of the ACHR, and representatives of the Ministry of Interior and UNMIS Gender and Human Rights, conducted a mission to the three Darfur States from 3 6 September 2007. During the mission, the group held meetings with Government officials, non governmental organizations and the State Committees. Following the mission, a core group on Gender based Violence, composed by the ACHR, the Ministry of Social Welfare and UNMIS Gender and Human Rights, and was established with the purpose to draft a report on the findings of the mission to Darfur.

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Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.6


The evaluation has been completed and the group of experts thanks the government for it’s report and encourages it to make the report public and to implement the Committees’ recommendations.


Recommendation 4.7 Short term


Establish an Independent National Human Rights Commission in accordance with the Paris Principles and with a dedicated mandate, resources and capacity to address the situation in Darfur.


Indicator: NHRC in accordance with Paris Principles established.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.7


Information orally submitted to the group of experts on 18 September 2007


The national transitional constitution stipulates that a national commission for human rights was to be established. These legal procedures were to be taken up by a legal commission for constitution review. Draft bills for the national human rights institution and elections have been drawn up by the commission. Once finalised, the legal commission will refer the text to all political parties and civil society in a consultative process, before referring it to the Council of Ministers. The Government has reached a stage of having prepared a draft bill, which should be given to all political constituencies.


^ Written information submitted to the group of experts on Darfur on 30 October 2007


The group of experts received a copy of the Human Rights Commission Bill of 2006 which, among other things establishes a task force to evaluate the work of the state committees in the 3 Darfur states, consisting of the Director of the violence against women unit as well as the representatives of the Advisory Council on Human Rights, the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, UNFPA’s Gender Unit, UNIFEM and UNMIS. This task force conducted a visit from 3 6 September 2007 to meet all relevant authorities to combat violence against women, and it issued a joint report, with recommendations to increase technical and financial support for the committees, provide needed information and to establish mechanisms to provide health, and psycho social support to victims of violence against women. The Human Rights Commission Bill 2006 was received from the Government.

^

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.7


A draft bill on the National Human Rights Commission was scheduled to be discussed in the Parliament at the time of the writing of the present report.

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.7


Although the recommendation has not been fully implemented, some progress has been made towards this goal. The NHRC was not established.


Recommendation 4.8 Medium term


Ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.


Indicator: OP CAT ratified.
^

Response of the Government of the Sudan on Recommendation 4.8


The Government indicated that it had not undertaken steps to implement this recommendation.

Information Received from Other Sources on Recommendation 4.8


No steps taken.

^

Assessment of Implementation of Recommendation 4.8


Not implemented.


ANNEX II: LIST OF DOCUMENTS RECEIVED FROM

^ THE GOVERNMENT OF THE SUDAN





13/11/2007

  • Documents from the Advisory council for human rights

  • List of sentences issued

  • Report of the Joint task force team assigned to appraise the work of the state committees to combat violence against women in Darfur

06/11/2007

  • NV on attack on Muhajeria

  • AMIS Report of attack on Muhajeria on 8 October 2007

30/10/2007

  • The Human Rights Commission Bill, 2006

  • Explanatory Note Commission Bill 2006

  • Status of the Implementation of the Recommendation related to violence against women (medium term)

  • Declaration, issued by the headquarters of the Sudanese Armed Forces related to the regulations and rules of behavior in the zones of conflict

  • Rec. No. (3-1) under accountability and justice investigation committee on Dyribat events

  • Rec. No (1-4-2) updating of lists of the detainees in Darfur states

  • Rec. No (1-5-1) protection of witnesses and victims

  • Statistics of complaints and verdicts against acts related to violence against women in North, South and West Darfur

  • Rec. No (2-6-1) Headlines, News and Reports published in Sudanese newspapers about Darfur

  • Rec. No (3-1) Investigation Committee on the events of Masara, State of Southern Darfur

  • Rec. No (3-1) Investigation Committee on the events in Alhabania & Alfalata, South Darfur

25/10/2007

  • Explanatory note related to the Armed Forces Bill 2007

  • Index of the Armed Forces Bill

  • The Armed Forces Bill 2007

  • Statistics of verdicts and trials (violence against women/murder) against officials and members of the disciplined Forces (police forces, armed forces and security) in West and North Darfur States

  • Verdicts and cases (still in front of the courts) of violence against women in West Darfur State

19/09/2007

  • Information regarding cases and convictions related to violence against women

14/09/2007

  • Report made by the Advisory Council for Human Rights in Sudan with regard to the Implementation of the Recommendations on Darfur (short term) made by the Human Right Council and related UN Organizations

03/09/2007

  • Draft of the Declaration regarding the necessary measure to combat the violence against women in Darfur Region

  • List of the judgments issued against crimes of violence against women

13/09/2007

  • Declaration of the Elimination of Violence Against Women in Darfur

  • Directive of the Minister of Justice regarding the formation of an investigation committee on the events which took place in Deribat

  • NV information on return of IDPs in West Darfur

28/08/2007

  • Declaration by the Government to combat violence against women

  • Directive to facilitate the human rights monitor work

30/08/2007

  • Document concerning the return of families from Abu Shoak IDP camp to their villages in Northern Darfur on Friday 17 Aug 2007

  • Update to the voluntary spontaneous return to Darfur 18/8/07 and a list containing the details of this voluntary return

  • Directives of the Director General of the National Security and Intelligence Services on safeguards of detention and lifting of immunity in cases of violating the law 12/08/07 and annexes

21/08/2007

  • Report by the Advisory Council on Human Rights on the implementation of the recommendations on Darfur (short term)

24/07/2007

  • Plan of action concerning the implementation of the short term recommendations of the Experts on Darfur


-----

 Приложения к настоящему докладу распространяются в полученном виде на языке представления и только на арабском и французском языках.



1Межведомственную делегацию правительства Судана возглавлял г-н Абдельдаем Зумрауи, заместитель министра юстиции. В состав делегации также входили д р Абдельмуним Осман Таха, докладчик Консультативного комитета по правам человека; д р Хассабо Мохамед Абдельрахман, Уполномоченный по вопросам гуманитарной помощи, министр обороны, бригадный генерал Хассан Хамид, и г н Муддадхир Абдельрахим из Национальной службы разведки и безопасности. Их сопровождали члены Постоянного представительства Судана при Отделении Организации Объединенных Наций в Женеве: Постоянный представитель, посол Ибрахим Миргани Ибрахим Мохамед Хеир; посол Омер Дахаб; посол Рахма Салих Элобед; г-н Салах Эльмубарак и г-жа Икбаль Исс-хаг.




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