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Human Rights Council – Universal Periodic Review

For use of information media; not an official record

Date: Wednesday, 11 May 2011 (Afternoon)

Country under review: PAPUA NEW GUINEA
 
Documents: The national report A/HRC/WG.6/11/PNG /1
Compilation of UN information A/HRC/WG.6/11/PNG/2
Summary of stakeholders’ information A/HRC/WG.6/11/PNG/3

Troika: Switzerland, Cameroon, Maldives

Concerned country - national report

- Represented by a 6 members delegation and headed by his Excellency Mr. Robert G. Aisi, Permanent Representative of Papua New Guinea to the UN in New York.

Highlights

-Papa New Guinea is facing human rights issues linked to development, cultural diversity, difficult geographical features, lack of infrastructural developments, lack of basics health, education and other services.
- Recent Visit of the UN Special Rapporteur on Torture.
- Papa New Guinea has ratified most of the UN human rights instruments, such as the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural rights.
- Papa New Guinea has yet to ratify: the Convention Against Torture, the International Convention on the Protection of Rights of all Migrants Workers and members of their families, International Convention for the Protection of all Persons from Enforced Disappearance, and the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
- Relevant laws to deal with human rights issues pertaining to domestic and sexual violence, child and young people protection have been implemented.
- Papa New Guinea National Human Rights Commission will come into operation in 2012.
- Papa New Guinea is far behind in its Human Development Index and is ranked 145 out of 175 countries.

Interactive discussion

Number of States taking part in the discussion
Member States: 20 Inscribed on the list: 36
Observer States: 16

Positive achievements

- Strengthening of its law and justice institutions for the promotion and protection of human rights.
- Gender equality within the justice system.
- Increasing number of female magistrates in the Village Courts system
- Family and Sexual Violence Police Units and the establishment of a Human Rights Desk in the Solicitor-General’s Office.
- Papa New Guinea has ratified the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women, the Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the Convention on the Rights of the Child.
- Sexual Offences and Crimes against Children Act
- The launch of the National Disability Policy based on the CRPD and the establishment of the National Advisory Committee on Disability.

Issues and questions raised

- Current situation of domestic violence and lasting negative effects of gender-related crimes.
- High rate of preventable maternal mortality.
- Abuse of power by the Police Forces.
- The Death Penalty.
- Poor condition of Papua New Guinea’s prisons and reintegration programmes.
- Protection of basics rights of People with Disabilities.
- What is the status of the process of creation of a national institution for human rights in 2012?
- What measures have been taken to avoid Child Labour and their right to education and medical treatment?
- How was the situation of persons living with HIV/AIDS improved?

Recommendations

- To ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the Convention Against Torture and its Optional Protocol, the Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, especially Women and Children and the protocol to the Convention against Transnational Organize Crime, International Labour Organization Convention 169, and take operational steps to implement the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
- To prioritise maternal health and basic education as part of the Millennium Development Goals.
- To address the high amount of cases of violence against women.
- Issue an invitation to the UN Special Rapporteur on violence against women.
- To adopt a National Gender Action Plan to enhance gender-equal treatment.
- To maintain the suspension of executions in establishing at first a de jure moratorium on all executions and, eventually, by abolishing the death penalty.
- To investigate cases of use of force by security forces and whether those responsible of these acts have been prosecuted and those victims received full compensation.
- To ensure that the provisions of international human are fully incorporated into domestic law.
- To establish a National Human Rights Institution accredited by the International Criminal Court, and in accordance with the Paris Principles.
- To ensure that women and girls who are victims of sexual and domestic violence, have access to immediate and effective means of redress and protection.
- To introduce a more effective legislation against trafficking in human beings, prevention of trafficking, prosecution and punishment of traffickers
- To decriminalize same-sex sexual relationships between consenting adults.
- To take necessary measures to ensure that all children are registered at birth.
- To invest adequate financial and manpower resources to improve prison conditions.
- To step up efforts to protect the environment, including by strengthening the relevant laws and providing the public with information.
- To improve Papua New Guinea’s cooperation with the UN Treaty Bodies by meeting its reporting obligations to the relevant bodies it is a party to.
- To work closely with the indigenous population in order to promote environmental protection.
- To amend its legislation to include the principle of equality between men and women and for the Parliament to urgently adopt the Equality and Participation Bill.
- To withdraw the reservations issued to seven articles of the Conventions related to the Statues of Refugees of 1951.
- To provide human rights training for law enforcement officers.

Response of the concerned country

- Regular regional consultations with civil society participation are being conducted.
- Death Penalty: the last execution dates back to 1954.
Domestic violence is considered as a criminal offence. But there is a lack of implementation and awareness of the law.
- Concerning the criminalization of HIV/AIDS discrimination, a massive aggressive program to prevent any discrimination has been put in place.
- Cooperation with the international community through the implementation of best practises.
- On the creation of National Human Rights Institution: it will be established soon.
- The protection of women rights is a constitutional law.
- Trafficking of person actions has been taken to face it.
- There is a National Anti corruption Campaign.
- The Government recognizes the need for cooperation with UN Bodies.
- Freedom of religion is a constitutional protected principle.
- A Climate change Comparative Plan has recently been adopted (reduction of emissions).

Adoption of the report by the UPR working group scheduled on
Friday 13 May, 4:30 p.m.

More information

Country under review (documents submitted): http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/UPR/PAGES/PGSession11.aspx

 

ADOPTION OF THE REPORT ON SAMOA

The Universal Periodic Review Working Group today also adopted, ad referendum, the report on Samoa (A/HRC/WG.6/11/L.12), following the review of that country on Monday, 9 May 2011.

121 recommendations were made to Samoa and out of them 42 have been examined by Samoa and enjoy its support, 31 were considered as already implemented or in the process of implementation; 43 will be further examined by Samoa, which will provided responses in due time, but no later than the eighteenth sessions of the Human Rights Council in September 2011; 5 did not enjoy the support of Samoa.

The report will be made available here: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/UPR/PAGES/WSSession11.aspx

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