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Statement by the Coordination Committee* of Special Procedures** on the loss of Asma Jahangir, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran

GENEVA (12 February 2018) - It is with profound sadness and shock that we have learned about the sudden loss of our colleague and friend, Ms. Asma Jahangir. She was a prominent member of the Special Procedures system, having served as special rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, and special rapporteur on the freedom of religion or belief. Her last and current engagement was as special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Asma’s contribution to our system and the human rights cause as a whole has been a life-long endeavor. She has always demonstrated courage and determination with the ultimate goal of improving human rights around the world.

She will be remembered as an outstanding expert, as a courageous and tireless advocate for all human rights, and as an inspiring colleague. She was committed and passionate in her work, devoting her life to promoting democracy and to advancing women's rights in not only her own country, but around the world. It was an honour and also a privilege to have known such a great person. We will miss Asma dearly.

We extend our sincere condolences to her family and friends.


* The Coordination Committee is a body of six independent experts which coordinates and facilitates the work of ‘special procedures’ as a whole. It is currently composed of Ms Catalina Devandas Aguilar (Chair), Ms. Houria Es SlamiMr. Gabor RonaMr. David KayeMs. Marie-Thérèse Keita Bocoum and Ms. Yanghee Lee (ex-officio). Learn more:http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/SP/Pages/CoordinationCommittee.aspx   

** "Special procedures" is the general name of the independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms of the Human Rights Council that address either specific country situations or thematic human rights issues in all parts of the world. Currently, there are 44 thematic mandates and 12 mandates related to countries and territories, with 80 active mandate holders. The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights provides these mechanisms with support for the fulfilment of their mandates. Learn more, go to:  http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/SP/Pages/Welcomepage.aspx

For more information and media inquiries, please contact:
Nathalie Rondeux (+41 22 917 9251 / nrondeux@ohchr.org)  

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This year, 2018, is the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN on 10 December 1948. The Universal Declaration – translated into a world record 500 languages – is rooted in the principle that “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” It remains relevant to everyone, every day. In honour of the 70th anniversary of this extraordinarily influential document, and to prevent its vital principles from being eroded, we are urging people everywhere to Stand Up for Human Rightswww.standup4humanrights.org