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Special Rapporteur on use of mercenaries as a means of impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination

The Commission on Human Rights in its Resolution 1987/16 decided to appoint a Special Rapporteur on theuse of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination.

Under the original mandate, which was repeatedly renewed, the Special Rapporteur was to examine the question of the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and of impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination. To carry out this task, he was authorized to seek and receive credible and reliable information from Governments, as well as specialized agencies, and intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations.

As emphasized by the Special Rapporteur in his initial consultations with States, his basic mandate was to “identify the characteristics and methods of mercenarism as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination.”

At its 60 th session in resolution 2004/5 the Commission requested “ the Special Rapporteur to continue taking into account in the discharge of his/her mandate that mercenary activities are continuing to occur in many parts of the world and are taking on new forms, manifestations and modalities and, in this regard, requests him/her to pay particular attention to the impact of the activities of private companies offering military assistance, consultancy and security services on the international market on the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination”.

The Special Rapporteur also sought to promote the ratification of the International Convention against the Recruitment, Use, Financing and Training of Mercenaries, as well as the adoption of national legislation specifically targeting mercenary activities.(Fact Sheet N.28)

By resolution 2005/2 the Commission on Human Rights decided to end the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the use of mercenaries as a means of impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination and to establish a 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, made up of five independent experts, one from each regional group.

Documents related to the mandate of the Special Rapporteur

Special Rapporteurs:

Ms. Shaista Shameem (Fiji)
2004-2005

Mr. Enrique Bernales Ballesteros (Peru)
1987-2004