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Human Rights Council 34: Universal Periodic Review of Mali

This statement was delivered during the 34th session of the Human Rights Council on 21 March 2017.

The Human Rights Council takes place at the Palais des Nations in Geneva
The Human Rights Council takes place at the Palais des Nations in Geneva

It is with regret that we find Mali in much the same position as last year. Whilst we support the introduction of joint patrols in Gao and the installation of interim authorities in three of the five northern regions; the overall pace of the peace process implementation is too slow. Fully implementing the peace agreement is the best way to improve the human rights situation and reduce the space for terrorists.

Restoring basic services, particularly the provision of education and health services, and improving the security essential to enable this, remain the greatest challenges. We support the Independent Expert’s call for all parties to find consensual solutions and provide Malian citizens with the peace they deserve.

We remain gravely concerned about acts of sexual violence committed by the security forces and others. We urge the Government to denounce and tackle this and other forms of violence against women, including spousal abuse and female genital mutilation.

We urge the Government and its partners to increase efforts to combat violent extremism and address the underlying issues surrounding human rights. Doing so will also help the Mali Government to more effectively tackle modern slavery, including human trafficking, which persists in Mali and is estimated to affect upwards of 110,000 people.

Which areas should be prioritised by the Government of Mali to improve the human rights situation?

Published 21 March 2017