UN Human Rights Council 43: Universal Periodic Review on Iraq

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The Human Rights Council takes place in Geneva.

Madam President,

The United Kingdom welcomes the Republic of Iraq’s engagement with the UPR process. We welcome Iraq’s actions to comply with Security Council Resolution 1325 and to cooperate with all UN international human rights mechanisms. Now Daesh are an active insurgency, it is essential that the Government of Iraq look to support and protect all Iraqi people.

However, we are deeply concerned by ongoing violence and extreme measures taken against protestors. The rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly must be protected, including for journalists. We acknowledge Iraq’s acceptance of the UK’s recommendation to protect freedom of peaceful assembly, including by properly investigating violence against protesters. We call on the Government to action this immediately.

We commend Iraq’s acceptance of the UK’s recommendation to reform legislation to ensure justice and support for survivors of sexual violence and the accountability of perpetrators, including specifically making sexual slavery and trafficking for sexual exploitation illegal as a crime separate from kidnapping or detention. However, we regret Iraq is not in a position to accept our third recommendation to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture.

The UK welcomes Iraq’s engagement with the UN and the International Community and we urge the Government to implement accepted recommendations fully.

Thank you.

Published 12 March 2020

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