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UN Independent Expert on Haiti launches follow-up mission on the implementation of his recommendations

GENEVA (19 February 2015) – The United Nations Independent Expert on the human rights situation in Haiti, Gustavo Gallón, will visit Haiti from 22 February to 3 March 2015 in order to evaluate the human rights situation, in particular civil and political rights. This visit is a follow-up to his July 2014 mission.

“The current pre-electoral context deserves a special attention and I would like to obtain further information on the situation directly in the field,” said the Independent Expert appointed by the UN Human Rights Council to analyse and advise on the human rights situation in Haiti.

“As in my two previous missions, I will focus on five priorities namely social inequalities, the situation of the persons deprived of their liberty, rule of law, the human rights violations committed in the past, and the impact disasters have on human rights, all of this in a new political context,” the Independent Expert noted.

During his mission, M. Gallón will meet with Haitians authorities, the diplomatic corps, officials from the United Nations Mission for the Stabilisation in Haiti (MINUSTAH) and UN agencies, human rights defenders and civil society organisations.

The Independent Expert will hold a press conference on 3 March 2015 (time to be confirmed) in the conference room of the MINUSTAH Logistic Base, to share with the media his preliminary observations. Access to the press conference is strictly limited to journalists.

The Independent Expert will present his report to the Human Rights Council in Geneva on 24th March 2015.

The UN Human Rights Council appointed Mr. Gustavo Gallón as Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Haiti in June 2013. Mr. Gallon has over 30 years of experience as a human rights defender and University Professor of Public Law and Human Rights. He was the Special Representative of the United Nations Human Rights Commission for Equatorial Guinea from 1999 to 2002. He is currently the director of the Colombian Commission of Jurists since its establishment in 1988. Mr. Gallón is independent of any government and performs his mandate in his individual capacity only. Learn more: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/SP/CountriesMandates/HT/Pages/IEHaiti.aspx

The Independent Experts are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures’ experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.

UN Human Rights, Country Page – Haiti: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/LACRegion/Pages/HTIndex.aspx

For additional information and media requests, please contact:
In Geneva (before and after the visit): Santiago Martínez de Orense (+41 22 928 93 52 /  smartinez-orense@ohchr.org) or write to ie-haiti@ohchr.org
In Port Prince (during the visit): Sophie Boutaud de la Combe (+ (509) 2229-6700 (ext 2691) /  boutauddelacombes@un.org)

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts:
Xabier Celaya, OHCHR Media Unit (+ 41 22 917 9383 / xcelaya@ohchr.org)

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