Re­port on UAE vi­o­la­tions next month, says al-Marri

Gulf Times - - QATAR/ REGION/ARAB WORLD -

HE the Chair­man of the Na­tional Hu­man Rights Com­mit­tee (NHRC) Dr Ali bin Smaikh al-Marri has an­nounced the launch of a com­pre­hen­sive re­port next month, doc­u­ment­ing vi­o­la­tions by the UAE of the de­ci­sions of the In­ter­na­tional Court of Jus­tice (ICJ), the con­tin­ued ob­struc­tion of ci­ti­zens and res­i­dents of Qatar by the UAE, and the preven­tion of those af­fected from seek­ing le­gal re­course to re­gain their rights.

The vi­o­la­tions come de­spite the Abu Dhabi au­thor­i­ties’ for­mal com­mit­ment to im­ple­ment­ing the de­ci­sions of the ICJ in this re­gard.

The NHRC chair­man also called on the up­com­ing Gulf sum­mit to es­tab­lish a mech­a­nism for re­dress­ing and find­ing a so­lu­tion to the suf­fer­ing of the vic­tims of the siege im­posed on Qatar. He stressed that any de­ci­sion com­ing out of the next sum­mit will not suc­ceed un­less it fo­cuses on the cri­sis re­sult­ing from the siege and puts an end to the on­go­ing suf­fer­ing of the vic­tims.

Dur­ing a meet­ing yes­ter­day with Michel Bachelet, United Na­tions High Com­mis­sioner for Hu­man Rights, HE Dr al-Marri called on the United Na­tions High Com­mis­sioner for Hu­man Rights (UNHCHR) to im­me­di­ately and ef­fec­tively move to take steps to stop the UAE’s vi­o­la­tions, en­sure full com­mit­ment by the Abu Dhabi au­thor­i­ties to re­spect the con­ven­tions and rec­om­men­da­tions of in­ter­na­tional bod­ies and im­ple­ment the pre­cau­tion­ary de­ci­sion of the ICJ on the ces­sa­tion of dis­crim­i­na­tory mea­sures against the ci­ti­zens and res­i­dents of Qatar.

He af­firmed the readi­ness of the per­ma­nent com­mit­tee to co­op­er­ate with the UN High Com­mis­sioner for Hu­man Rights in all mat­ters that would pro­tect hu­man rights and de­fend them re­gion­ally and in­ter­na­tion­ally and to push for ur­gent and ef­fec­tive so­lu­tions to stop the suf­fer­ing of thou­sands of fam­i­lies af­fected by the siege.

HE Dr al-Marri praised the prom­i­nent and ef­fec­tive role played by the UNHCHR in ad­dress­ing the se­ri­ous vi­o­la­tions caused by the block­ade of Qatar through its numer­ous re­ports and cor­re­spon­dence with the blockad­ing coun­tries, de­mand­ing their ces­sa­tion of hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions and is­su­ing the first of­fi­cial UN re­port that ex­plic­itly con­demns such vi­o­la­tions and calls for their ces­sa­tion.

He also called on the UN High Com­mis­sioner for Hu­man Rights to take mea­sures to en­sure that the blockad­ing coun­tries com­ply with the find­ings of the tech­ni­cal mis­sion of the high com­mis­sioner fol­low­ing her visit to Doha in Novem­ber last year. This cul­mi­nated in the is­suance of the first of­fi­cial UN re­port con­demn­ing the vi­o­la­tions of the blockad­ing coun­tries and urges them to stop “dis­crim­i­na­tory and ar­bi­trary” mea­sures.

He noted that de­spite the warn­ings is­sued by the UN High Com­mis­sioner for Hu­man Rights on the dan­gers of such vi­o­la­tions, 11 spe­cial rap­por­teurs of the Hu­man Rights Coun­cil and the Group on Ar­bi­trary De­ten­tion sent let­ters to the blockad­ing coun­tries urg­ing them to stop their vi­o­la­tions and dis­crim­i­na­tory mea­sures against the ci­ti­zens and res­i­dents of Qatar. The blockad­ing coun­tries con­tinue to ig­nore the res­o­lu­tions of the United Na­tions, the in­ter­na­tional com­mu­nity and hu­man rights or­gan­i­sa­tions, it has been ob­served.

The NHRC chair­man called on the high com­mis­sioner to ad­dress the blockad­ing coun­tries and ex­ert greater pres­sure to com­pel them to com­ply with the UN res­o­lu­tions.

HE Dr al-Marri also dis­cussed the is­sue of four Qatari na­tion­als who are still sub­jected to en­forced dis­ap­pear­ance and ar­bi­trary de­ten­tion by the Saudi au­thor­i­ties. He called on the High Com­mis­sioner for Hu­man Rights to hold the Saudi au­thor­i­ties ac­count­able for their where­abouts and press for their im­me­di­ate re­lease.

He con­veyed to the high com­mis­sioner the suf­fer­ing of the Qatari ci­ti­zens de­tained and their fears about their fate, in the ab­sence of any in­for­ma­tion about their where­abouts at present de­spite all the ap­peals made by their fam­i­lies and the Na­tional Hu­man Rights Com­mit­tee’s ef­forts con­cern­ing the rel­e­vant UN mech­a­nisms. All the in­for­ma­tion re­quested for by the rel­e­vant UN bod­ies on the iden­tity of Qatari na­tion­als, vic­tims of forced ab­duc­tion and ar­bi­trary de­ten­tion, were pro­vided.

He noted that the NHRC holds the Saudi au­thor­i­ties fully re­spon­si­ble legally for the fate of the four Qatari ci­ti­zens and the psy­cho­log­i­cal and phys­i­cal dam­age they may cause. He stressed that the NHRC would not re­main silent and would con­tinue its ac­tions and re­sort to all le­gal and ju­di­cial mea­sures un­til they are re­leased and re­dressed.

At the end of the meet­ing, HE Dr al-Marri handed over to the UNHCHR re­ports of vi­o­la­tions com­mit­ted in a year and a half since the siege started.

Re­gard­ing the Gulf sum­mit, he said in re­marks on the side­lines of the meet­ing with Bachelet that any talk about con­ven­ing the sum­mit and the de­ci­sions that could re­sult from it would not be im­por­tant if the suf­fer­ing of the vic­tims of the siege was not a sub­stan­tive is­sue in the lead­ers’ dis­cus­sions.

He said the pri­or­ity of the agenda of the Gulf sum­mit meet­ing in Riyadh should be to find con­crete and ur­gent so­lu­tions to the tragedy of thou­sands of ci­ti­zens and res­i­dents of the Gulf coun­tries who con­tinue to suf­fer vi­o­la­tions re­sult­ing from the Gulf cri­sis, take im­me­di­ate and bind­ing de­ci­sions for all the Gulf states to bridge the gap caused by the siege and put an end to the suf­fer­ing of the Gulf peo­ple due to the uni­lat­eral mea­sures taken by some GCC states against a Gulf neigh­bour.

He added, “There is no doubt to­day that the peo­ple of the Gulf do not care much about the con­ven­ing of the sum­mit or not, as much as restor­ing the unity of the Gulf na­tions. This can only be achieved by open talks that start with stop­ping the ar­bi­trary mea­sures of the siege coun­tries against the Qatar’s ci­ti­zens and res­i­dents, through the adop­tion of ur­gent mea­sures to re­dress the harm caused to the vic­tims.” He re­it­er­ated that the up­com­ing Gulf sum­mit could not be suc­cess­ful if the is­sue of cri­sis vic­tims of the cri­sis was ig­nored.

He also stressed the need for the Gulf sum­mit in Riyadh to pro­duce strong and ef­fec­tive de­ci­sions and rec­om­men­da­tions, in­clud­ing work on the es­tab­lish­ment of a hu­man rights sys­tem in the GCC that would be at the level of as­pi­ra­tions of the Gulf peo­ples as well as civil so­ci­ety or­gan­i­sa­tions. He pointed that the cur­rent mech­a­nisms adopted by the rules of pro­ce­dure of the GCC have failed to find a so­lu­tion to the one-anda-half-year-long cri­sis.

The NHRC chair­man said the Gulf gov­ern­ments should draw les­sons from the cur­rent cri­sis and adopt a new sys­tem that in­cludes the es­tab­lish­ment of ef­fec­tive dis­pute res­o­lu­tion mech­a­nisms and a sys­tem for the pro­tec­tion of hu­man rights to en­sure that the Gulf ci­ti­zens are not vul­ner­a­ble to any po­lit­i­cal dis­putes or dif­fer­ences be­tween the GCC states, as is the case in re­gional and in­ter­na­tional blocs and or­gan­i­sa­tions such as the Eu­ro­pean Union. “We should not turn a blind eye to the fail­ure of the Gulf and Arab mech­a­nisms of hu­man rights in­sti­tu­tions, in­clud­ing the cur­rent sys­tem of the GCC coun­tries, in de­fend­ing and lift­ing in­jus­tice from the vic­tims, in par­al­lel with the in­abil­ity of na­tional in­sti­tu­tions and hu­man rights or­gan­i­sa­tions to over­come po­lit­i­cal dif­fer­ences and find a so­lu­tion to the cri­sis,” he con­cluded.

HE Dr Ali bin Smaikh al-Marri dur­ing a meet­ing with Michel Bachelet in Geneva yes­ter­day.

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