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UN fact-finding committee to focus on human rights defenders: CIHRS - Daily News Egypt

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UN fact-finding committee to focus on human rights defenders: CIHRS

Cairo-based human rights group calls on UNHRC to hand Syrian file to International Criminal Court

The United Nations fact-finding committee on Syria confirmed that human rights workers are paying the price for their commitment to human rights standards, the Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) said in a Wednesday press statement.

The CIHRS, in cooperation with the Euro-Mediterranean Network for Human Rights proposed suggestions to the committee on 16 September in a speech at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva.

Their speech focused on the obstacles human rights workers face in Syria, frequently facing detention and trials in “inhumane” conditions. The group added in the statement, they are also routinely tortured, sometimes to death.

On the other hand, they face recurring threats and increasing dangers from non-governmental extremist parties, the statement added.

The head of the UN fact-finding committee Paulo Pinhiero, stated that the committee will focus on the dangers human rights workers and journalists in Syria face as they work.

The Syrian government however continues to ban the committee from working inside the country.

“Syria is now one of the most dangerous countries in the world for human rights defenders and journalists” the head of the committee said. The Commission will allocate its next report in reviewing the risks and violations made against them, he added.

The CIHRS participated by bringing up the case of Mazen Darwish, the Syrian journalist in the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression.

They also cited the disappearance of Razan Zaitouna, who was kidnapped with three of her colleagues by armed militant groups nine months ago.

Human rights organizations called on the Council to live up to its responsibilities in defending the interests of the victims of the Syrian Crisis by handing the Syrian file over to the International Criminal Court.

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