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Human rights defenders: UN expert launches fact-finding mission to India

GENEVA / DELHI (10 January 2011) – The UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, Margaret Sekaggya, started Monday her first fact-finding mission to India from 10-21 January 2011.

“The aim of the mission is to evaluate in person, in an objective and impartial manner, the situation of human rights defenders in the country, and to initiate a process of constructive cooperation with the authorities,” said Mrs. Sekaggya, who will visit India at the invitation of the Government.

In order to gather first-hand information, the Special Rapporteur will meet with State officials, a broad segment of civil society and the press, representatives of UN agencies and the diplomatic corps.

The UN Expert will visit the States of Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir, Orissa and West Bengal, and will hold national consultations with human rights defenders in Delhi. A press conference will be held in Delhi at the conclusion of the Special Rapporteur’s visit on 21 January 2011 (time and venue to be announced at a later stage).

A final report on the visit will be presented to the Human Rights Council in 2012.

Margaret Sekaggya, a lawyer from Uganda, was appointed Special Rapporteur in March 2008 by the UN Human Rights Council. She is independent from any Government and serves in her individual capacity.

For more information about the mandate of the Special Rapporteur, log on to: http://www2.ohchr.org/english/issues/defenders/index.htm

OHCHR Country Page – India: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Countries/AsiaRegion/Pages/INIndex.aspx 

For further information and media enquiries, please contact:
In Geneva: Ms. Dolores Infante-Canibano (Tel: + 41 22 917 9730 / Email: dinfante@ohchr.org).
In Delhi: Mr. Rajiv Chandran (Tel: 91-11-4653-2237/ mobile: 98106-06833 / Email: chandran@unicindia.org)