afghanistan unhrc special session
The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is set to hold its special session on August 24 to address “serious human rights concerns and situation in Afghanistan.”
The request for special session was made on August 17 jointly by Afghanistan, Pakistan and Coordinator of Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). Till now 89 countries have supported the session request.
Support of one-third of 47 Council member states is required for the session to convene, which is 16 or more. Session request has so far been backed by 29 State Members of the Council. The countries are Argentina, Austria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Czechia, Denmark, France, Gabon, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Libya, Mauritania, Mexico, Netherlands, Pakistan, Poland, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Togo, United Kingdom, and Uzbekistan.
Request for session has also been supported by 60 Observer States of the Council. These are Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Benin, Brunei Darussalam, Chad, Comoros, Croatia, Cyprus, Djibouti, Egypt, Estonia, Finland, Gambia, Greece, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Hungary, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Morocco, Mozambique, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Suriname, Sweden, Syria, Tajikistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, Yemen and the State of Palestine.
After the Taliban seized Afghanistan’s capital Kabul on Sunday, August 15, UN Special Rapporteur has urged countries to assist and support human rights defenders in the country who are at direct target of the Taliban now. Karima Bennoune, the UN Special Rapporteur of cultural rights said that Afghanistan is facing a “cultural disaster” after falling to the Taliban. “It is deplorable that the world has abandoned Afghanistan to a fundamentalist group like the Taliban whose catastrophic human rights record, including the practice of gender apartheid, use of cruel punishments and systematic destruction of cultural heritage, when in power, is well documented,” she added.