Communications report of Special Procedures*

Communications sent, 1 June to 30 November 2012;

Replies received, 1 August 2012 to 31 January 2013

Joint report by the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, and on the right to non-discrimination in this context; the Working Group on arbitrary detention; the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Cambodia; the Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography; the Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights; the Special Rapporteur on the right to education; the Working Group on enforced or involuntary disappearances; the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions; the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights; the Special Rapporteur on the right to food; the Independent expert on the effects of foreign debt and other related international financial obligations of States on the full enjoyment of human rights, particularly economic, social and cultural rights; the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression; the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association; the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief; the Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health; the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders; the Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers; the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples; the Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons; the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Islamic Republic of Iran; the Working Group on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination; the Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants; the Independent Expert on minority issues; the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar; the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967; the Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation & guarantees of non-recurrence; the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance; the Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences; the Independent Expert on the situation on human rights in the Sudan; the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism; the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment; the Special Rapporteur on the implications for human rights of the environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and wastes; the Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, the Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation; the Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and in practice; and the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences.

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* The present report is circulated as received.


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I. Introduction

1. Special procedures are mandated by the Human Rights Council to report to it on their activities (see Appendix).

2. In 2009, the sixteenth annual meeting of special procedures mandate holders decided that a joint communications report would be prepared (cf. A/HRC/12/47, para 24-26), with this decision being reconfirmed by the seventeenth annual meeting of special procedures in 2010 in order to avoid duplication, rationalize documentations, allow examination of cross cutting issues and ensure that the content of communications and any follow-up would feed into the universal periodic review mechanism more effectively. Mandate holders decided that the report should contain summaries of communications, and statistical information (A/HRC/15/44, para. 26-27).

3. The Outcome of the review of the work and functioning of the Human Rights Council calls on the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to maintain information on special procedures in a comprehensive and easily accessible manner, and encourages the use of modern information technology to reduce the circulation of paper (A/HRC/RES/16/21, Annex, para. 29 and 60).

4. Short summaries of allegations communicated to the respective State or other entity are included in the report, and the communications sent and responses received are accessible electronically through hyperlinks Communications are reproduced in the language in which they were sent. Replies received in Arabic, Chinese or Russian are included with translations into English, where available.

5. This report covers all urgent appeals, letters of allegations and other letters sent by special procedures mandate holders between 1 June and 30 November 2012 and all replies received between 1 August 2012 and 31 January 2013. Communications sent before 1 June 2012 are reported in A/HRC/21/49, A/HRC/20/30, A/HRC/19/44 and A/HRC/18/51 respectively.

6. The report also includes replies received between 1 August 2012 and 31 January 2013, relating to communications sent by special procedures mandate holders before 1 June 2012. Some of these replies supplement information communicated earlier by the respective State.

7. The present report contains urgent appeals sent by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention and the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances and joint urgent appeals sent by them together with other mandates. It does not contain other types of communications issued by these mandates, which are processed according to their own distinctive procedures, and are reported in the annual reports of these two working groups.

8. The names of some alleged victims have been obscured in order to protect their privacy and prevent further victimization. Names of victims who would otherwise have their identities protected are mentioned only when the concerned individual has expressly consented or requested to have his or her name in the public report. In the original communications, the full names of the alleged victims were provided to the Government concerned. Names of alleged perpetrators have systematically been darkened in State replies to preserve the presumption of innocence.

9. In preparing the statistics included in this report, uniform reporting periods have been used, reflecting all communications sent between 1 June and 30 November 2012, and responses received in relation to these communications up to 31 January 2013.

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II. Communications sent and replies received

A. Communications sent between 1 June and 30 November 2012 and replies received by 31 January 2013

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Date

type

Case No

Country


Mandate(s)


Summary of the allegations transmitted

Reply

15/06/2012

JAL

ISR 6/2012

Israel

Adequate Housing

Human Rights Defenders

Alleged summoning for questioning in connection with the rebuilding of demolished homes in East Jerusalem. According to the information received, Mr. Meir Margalit was summoned by the State Prosecutor to the Interior Ministry's Building Inspection Branch for questioning on suspicion of building without a permit. It is alleged that the summons may be linked to Mr. Margalit's efforts to halt demolitions. Mr. Margalit is a founding member of the Israeli Committee Against Housing Demolitions (ICAHD), an organization which rebuilds homes that have been demolished by the State of Israel in East Jerusalem.

19/06/2012

JAL*

ISR 7/2012

Israel

Arbitrary detention; Health; OPT;

Allegations of arbitrary detention and denial of access to appropriate medical care of three Palestinian prisoners detained in Ramleh prison medical center in Israel. According to the information received, Mr. Mahmoud Sarsak and Mr. Samer Al-Barq have been detained without charge or trial since 2009 and 2010 respectively and are on hunger strike in protest of the recent extensions of their detention. Mr. Akram Rikhawi, detained since 2004 and suffering from multiple chronic illnesses, is on hunger strike in protest at the denial of his request for early release on medical grounds, a right conferred on prisoners who have served two thirds of their prison sentences. Mr. Sarsak has passed his 80th day of hunger strike and Mr. Rikhawi, his 50th day. Mr. Al-Barq has allegedly been on hunger strike since 21 May 2012. Requests by Mr. Sarsak and Mr. Rikhawi for treatment in a civilian hospital have allegedly been denied.

04/09/2012

JUA**

ISR 9/2012

Israel

Freedom of expression;

Freedom of peaceful assembly and of association; Human rights defenders;

Alleged travel ban imposed on human rights defender. According to the information received, on 3 August 2012, Mr. Abdullatif Ghaith, Chair of Addameer human rights NGO in Ramallah, was ordered to sign an order banning him from travelling abroad and stating that he constitutes a "threat to national security". Mr. Ghaith is currently banned from entering the West Bank where Addameer's office is located. The ban reportedly stems from an order issued by the Israeli Military Commander on 9 October 2011 for a period of six months. The ban was extended for an additional six months in April 2012. The original order reportedly stated that the ban on Mr. Ghaith was deemed necessary to protect the security and public order of the "area", i.e. the West Bank. Mr. Gaith has been held in administrative detention without charge or trial in Israeli prisons on three separate occasions, each of which lasted six months. He was last detained in this manner from June 2004 to January 2005.

25/09/2012

JUA

ISR 10/2012

Israel

Health

Allegation that a Palestinian citizen who is critically ill has been denied permission to exit the West Bank to receive necessary treatment. According to the information received, Mr. Shadi Zuheir Naim Natsheh, Palestinian citizen, born 5 March 1989, and resident of Hebron, West Bank, Occupied Palestinian Territory, is critically ill with stomach cancer. He reportedly requires urgent medical care outside the West Bank and has allegedly been denied permission by the Israeli authorities to exit West Bank to receive such treatment abroad.

26/11/2012

JUA

ISR 12/2012

Israel

Arbitrary detention; Freedom of expression; Freedom of peaceful assembly and of association; Health; Human rights defenders; Independence of judges and lawyers; OPT; Torture;

Alleged detention, ill-treatment and violations of due process of human rights defender. According to the information received, on 15 October 2012, Mr. Ayman Nasser was arrested from his home in Saffa in the West Bank, and has since then been detained at Moskobiyyeh detention centre in Jerusalem. Reportedly, formal charges have not been presented and the defender's detention has been extended on six occasions, based on evidence characterized as secret by the judge. Mr. Nasser's lawyers have reportedly not been informed what this evidence consists of Mr. Nasser is a researcher with Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, an organization based in Ramallah which advocates for the rights of Palestinian political prisoners. He is also Chairperson of the Handala Centre, an educational, artistic and sports centre in Saffa. According to reports, while in detention, Mr. Nasser has been subjected to ill-treatment, has not been provided with adequate medical attention, and has been held in isolation in sub-standard conditions.

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*JAL: Joint letter of allegation

**JUA: Joint urgent appeal