UPR Media Briefing Note


Monday, 21 May 2012 (Afternoon)
For use of information media; not an official record

State under review

Ecuador
Represented by 40-member delegation headed by Mr. Lenin MORENO GARCÉS, Vice President of Ecuador.

Documents

To access national report, compilation of UN information, and summary of stakeholders’ information, visit Ecuador page on UPR website.

Troika *

Switzerland, Cuba, Congo.

Opening statement by State under review

Key points from opening statement of State under review:

  • In last four years Ecuador has strengthened its commitment to human rights, peace and democratic stability;
  • Since 2008, a new political constitution was enacted giving rise to new model of development enshrined in human rights;
  • Among the major advances in the country was a new economic policy leading to economic growth, a rise in the GDP, and a reduction in unemployment; furthermore, the percentage of workers affiliated to social security has increased significantly in recent years;
  • The State has tripled investment in health, education and social inclusion leading to a vast reduction in the poverty rate in the country; Child labour has also been on the decrease recently;
  • Ecuador has been regulating the use of water thus increasing its use for certain populations and has thus had positive impact on the enjoyment of the rights health; moreover, steps have been taken to ensure the right to food; access to housing has also been on the rise in recent years;
  • Increased efforts have also taken place in the area of education at all levels, with a notable increase in enrolment from the indigenous population; generally, the State continues to enhance the right of indigenous people;
  • In terms of civil rights, there was now greater participation among citizens in public life compared to previous years; prison reforms have also been underway so as to protect the rights of detainees and to improve prison conditions;  The State has also implemented a vocational training programme in human rights for law enforcement officials;
  • Ecuador has also made advances to eliminate discrimination against persons based on sexual orientation and gender identity;
  • The State has also put in place a plan to combat trafficking in persons;
  • In 2007 the State conducted a study on persons with disabilities leading to a number of new policies to enhance the rights of these persons including employment rights and their participation in public life.

(See full statement on Ecuador page on UPR Extranet)

Participants

In total, 73 States participated in the discussion:  26 HRC members and 47 observers  (Statements available on UPR Extranet).

Positive achievements

Positive achievements noted by delegations included, among others:

  • The enactment of the new Constitution in 2008 leading to human rights reforms;
  • Measures taken towards eradicating poverty and towards implementing social inclusion policies for all, including indigenous populations and those with disabilities;
  • Efforts of the State to eliminate child labour and the reform of the educational system in the country;
  • Steps to address weakness in the justice system and introduce reforms in the judiciary;
  • The ratification of the OPCAT and the Convention on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances;
  • The extension of a standing invitation to Special Procedures.

Issues and Questions

Main issues and questions raised by the Working Group:

  • Measures taken to ensure that judges, when adjudicating cases, were protected from undue influence, whether political or private;  the independence of the judiciary, 
  • The status of indigenous women in the country and the case of employment of women in rural areas;
  • Ecuador’s policies in the area of press freedom and the use of censorship and anti-press harassment that included the use of criminal and civil defamation suits to silence critics;
  • Universal birth registration in light of the situation of girls, indigenous and afro-descendant children as well as children from migrant families;
  • Steps to combat trafficking in persons.

Recommendations

In total, States participating in the discussion posed a series of recommendations to Ecuador.  These included, among others: 

  • To continue with efforts to eliminate child labour, and to increase social spending on health, education and social well-being;
  • To take additional efforts to reduce maternal and infant mortality in urban and rural areas and to take additional measures to improve the quality of life of people living in rural areas and suffering from social exclusion;
  • To adopt a special measure for the realisation of collective rights of indigenous peoples and the adoption of mechanisms to ensure their right to be consulted;
  • To ensure that community activists and indigenous leaders can exercise their right to peaceful assembly and protest;
  • To take targeted measures to address the situation of girls and the challenge of ensuring the accessibility to registration for indigenous peoples and people of African descent as well as for migrant families;
  • To strengthen efforts to promote and protect rights of women prisoners and children born in prison;
  • For the State to ensure its adherence to article 19 of the ICCPR as regards freedom of expression and to ensure that laws on freedom of the press were brought in line with international standards;
  • To guarantee the right to freedom of expressions for all human rights defenders and journalists and to ensure that criminal provisions were not misused to curb the ability to exercise the rights to freedom of expression, assembly or association;
  • To engage in a constructive dialogue with the media, NGOs and international bodies to promote freedom of expression;
  • To ensure prompt, impartial and timely investigation of all police abuses in order to bring perpetrators to justice and put an end to impunity and to ensure the independence of the judiciary and continue the fight against corruption.

Adoption of report of Working Group

The adoption of the report of the UPR Working Group on Ecuador is scheduled to take place on Friday, 25 May 2012.

The troikas are a group of three States selected through a drawing of lots who serve as rapporteurs and who are charged with preparing the report of the Working Group on the country review with the involve

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