Rights meeting in Geneva to discuss disappearances in Pakistan

March 04, 2013 - 12:41:59 am


ISLAMABAD: The Human Rights Council, now meeting in Geneva for its 22nd session, will take up tomorrow the report on enforced or involuntary disappearances in Pakistan prepared by its working group that visited the country in September last year.

The working group delegation comprising Olivier de Frouville and Osman El Hajje visited Pakistan from September 10 to 20 to gather information on cases of enforced disappearances.

The delegation studied the measures taken by the government to prevent and eradicate enforced disappearances and about issues relating to truth, justice and reparation for the victims.

According to the schedule announced by the council for its current session which will end on March 22, the report of the working group on its mission to Pakistan will come up for debate.

The report contains a set of 17 recommendations which among others recommended that Pakistan should ratify the Convention for the Protection of All Persons Against Enforced Disappearances.

It recommended that a new and autonomous crime of enforced disappearances should be included in the criminal code, following the definition given in the 2006 convention, and with all the legal consequences flowing from this qualification.

Investigation against and punishment of perpetrators should be in accordance with law, and with all the guarantees of a fair trial. 

Perpetrators should be punished with appropriate penalties, with the clear exclusion of the death penalty.

Investigations should be initiated whenever there are reasonable grounds to believe that an enforced disappearance has been committed, even if there has been no formal complaint.


Sindh awaits ADB funding for 11 schemes


HYDERABAD: The Sindh irrigation department is awaiting approval by the Asian Development Bank (ADB) for 11 schemes of rehabilitating of river dykes after the Federal Flood Commission

(FFC) refused further assistance though it had committed to provide a grant of Rs500m for repairing only five river embankments out of a total 16.

These 11 schemes are to be executed at a total cost of Rs1.7 bn and the Sindh government is depending upon the ADB which had offered two separate loans for the rehabilitation of river embankments after the 2010 super flood.