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Put Self-Determination on the Human Rights Council Agenda - Independent Expert

Barrister A Majid Tramboo, Chairman of International Council for Human Rights (ICHR) with Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order. Alfred M. de Zayas Barrister A Majid Tramboo, Chairman of International Council for Human Rights (ICHR) with Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order. Alfred M. de Zayas

On the eve of the 24th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), beginning on 9th September 2013 at the Palais des Nations, Geneva - Barrister A Majid Tramboo, Chairman International Commission for Human Rights (ICHR) and the European Director of International Human Rights Association of American Minorities (IHRAAM) has welcomed the report of Alfred de Zayas, Independent Expert for the Promotion of Equitable and Democratic International Order which he has submitted to UNHRC.  The report will be presented by him on 10th September 2013 at the UNHRC’s above session. 

Barrister Tramboo recognised that, in pursuit of his mandate, Mr Alfred de Zayas has undertaken various activities associated with his mandate.  Referring to the expert consultation meeting on global enforcement mechanisms and means to achieve an international order, he pointed out that IHRAAM & ICHR were part of that process.

Expressing his views on the “Recommendation to the Council”, in the above report, Barrister Tramboo overwhelmingly endorsed: “The Independent Expert notes that the self-determination item was a permanent item on the agenda of the Commission on Human Rights.  Bearing in mind that self-determination is a pillar of the Charter and that it has not been achieved by many indigenous peoples, minorities, unrepresented peoples, and peoples under occupation, the council should resume consideration of self-determination as part of items 3 and 4 of its agenda.”

Barrister Tramboo applauded the Independent Expert for recommending: “The Council should consider holding a workshop on self-determination and genuine participation. A democratic deficit is ultimately a deficit in self-determination.”

He emphasised upon the UNHRC members and the civil society to support the Independent Expert recommendation that the Council should consider recommending to the General Assembly to bring specific legal questions concerning self-determination, war, peace, democracy, corporate social responsibility and debt cancellation to the International Court of Justice for advisory opinions. 

In his concluding remarks Barrister Tramboo stated that post-colonial military occupations have resulted in even greater threats to peace, as evidenced in the egregious situations of unrepresented peoples and nations, particularly those suffering ongoing foreign occupations, of which Palestine and Kashmir are classic instances.  These conflicts involve exacerbated human rights violations, war crimes and crimes against humanity, with the peoples concerned facing torture, mass disappearances, extra-judicial killings, and genocide.

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