This week in focus:
CSOs Meet with New UN Special Adviser on RtoP
On 20 December, 2018, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announced the appointment of his new UN Special Adviser on the Responsibility to Protect, Ms. Karen Smith, of South Africa. Ms. Smith has spent the first few weeks in her new role in New York, and graciously accepted an invitation from the ICRtoP to meet at an informal meeting with our New York-based civil society members and partners. We are grateful for the opportunity to continue such important discussions around RtoP and its implementation with the newly appointed Special Adviser, standing ready to serve as a partner in the advancement of the norm to better protect populations from genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and ethnic cleansing.
The ICRtoP Secretariat will continue to work hard in this aim in 2019 and is looking forward to further engagement with global stakeholders across all levels and increased partnerships with the members of our Coalition.
Please find the ICRtoP’s statement on the appointment of Ms. Smith here.
What to Watch:
Mali: How Mali Is Pursuing Justice for a War That Never Really Ended (World Politics Review)
Though violence and insecurity continue to plague Mali, the nation is taking steps to pursue justice. Backed by the UN, the government has initiated a wide variety of initiatives including disarmament, establishing a truth commission, and beginning criminal trials. President Keïta called for a partial amnesty bill to help resolve issues, but impunity may prevent full reconciliation and achieving sustainable peace.
Venezuela: Guaido calls for more protests as Maduro displays military might (Al-Jazeera)
The political situation in Venezuela remains uncertain with President Maduro and self-proclaimed interim President Guido both vie for legitimacy at home and abroad. Concerns over military deployment, humanitarian assistance, as well as debates of sovereignty remain of top concern in the international community.
But Also Don’t Miss:
Burma: End of mission statement by the Special Rapporteur
UN Special Rapporteur Yanghee Lee delivers her findings on the poor state of human rights in Burma.
Cameroon: Cameroon: Opposition Forces Arrested: Violent Crackdown on Leaders
State forces have arrested several prominent opposition leaders over the past week, where in what is seen as an attempt to silence those challenging the government.
Cote d’Ivoire: A Shrinking Window for Justice in Cote d’Ivoire
Human Rights Watch sees diminishing opportunities for the International Criminal Court and Cote d’Ivoire to hold perpetrators accountable for rights violations committed.
Sudan: Sudanese government releases 186 protesters
The Sudanese government released detainees arrested during the protests, this does not include opposition leaders and activists, however.
Zimbabwe: Daylight beatings instill public fear in ‘lawless’ country
Violent crackdowns by police and military forces against civilian protesters continue.
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