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--------- Begin forwarded message ---------- From: "UN News Service" <UNNews@un.org> To: <email@example.com> Subject: IRAQ: UN TO FACILITATE COUNTRYWIDE DISCUSSIONS ON ATTAINING JUSTICE FOR PAST ABUSES Date: Tue, 1 Jul 2003 14:01:18 -0400 Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> IRAQ: UN TO FACILITATE COUNTRYWIDE DISCUSSIONS ON ATTAINING JUSTICE FOR PAST ABUSES New York, Jul 1 2003 2:00PM United Nations envoy Sergio Vieira de Mello, fresh from a two-day workshop in Baghdad on how to ensure justice for past human rights violations by the ousted regime of Saddam Hussein, said today the world body would facilitate nationwide discussions throughout Iraq to identify further necessary action. Mr. Vieira de Mello, Secretary-General Kofi Annan's Special Representative, organized the workshop with Iraqis, international experts and members of the United States-run interim authority to determine how to attain justice for at least 300,000 people who disappeared in Saddam's detention centres and torture chambers. "The Workshop was the first step in a long and ever-widening path in which Iraqis will participate to decide how best they should address the human rights violations of the past - not at the risk of prejudicing the future, but in order to guarantee a more peaceful, prosperous and equitable future for all the people of Iraq," his office said in a statement. "The United Nations will now facilitate nationwide discussions aimed at identifying further action required to address past violations." In his closing remarks today to the workshop, Mr. Vieira de Mello referred to a suggestion to establish a national independent human rights commission to monitor current violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. "Everyone - that is the executive arm of the Iraqi Interim Administration, interim ministers to be designated, the (American-run Coalition Provisional Authority) CPA, the UN - all political actors - need to know that its behaviour is being monitored by an independent Iraqi body and that none will be above scrutiny of the law and international norms," he said. Of the 60 participants, the majority were Iraqi lawyers and Iraqi human rights organizations, particularly those focusing on the missing and mass graves. Ten international experts attended, including representatives of the International Red Cross, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Physicians for Human Rights, International centre for Transitional Justice, the War Torn Society, and the UN Office on Missing Persons and Forensics in Kosovo. The CPA was represented through the head of the Justice sector as well as staff dealing with human rights and mass graves. Meanwhile, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Special Envoy for Iraq, Dennis McNamara, was set to arrive in Baghdad as part of his current mission to the region. The agency is making efforts to arrange for the early and organized returns of small groups of Iraqi refugees from Iran. In parallel, the return of Iranian refugees from Iraq will be resumed. The Iranian government agreed on this approach. 2003-07-01 00:00:00.000 ________________ For more details go to UN News Centre at http://www.un.org/news To change your profile or unsubscribe go to: http://www.un.org/news/dh/latest/subscribe.shtml --------- End forwarded message ---------- ________________________________________________________________ The best thing to hit the internet in years - Juno SpeedBand! Surf the web up to FIVE TIMES FASTER! Only $14.95/ month - visit www.juno.com to sign up today! _______________________________________________ Sent via the discussion list of the Campaign Against Sanctions on Iraq. To unsubscribe, visit http://lists.casi.org.uk/mailman/listinfo/casi-discuss To contact the list manager, email email@example.com All postings are archived on CASI's website: http://www.casi.org.uk