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President of Human Rights Council appoints members of monitoring mission on South Sudan

GENEVA (14 June 2016) - The President of the Human Rights Council, Ambassador Choi Kyonglim (Republic of Korea), announced today the appointment of Ms. Yasmin Sooka (South Africa), Mr. Kenneth R. Scott (USA) and Mr. Godfrey M. Musila (Kenya), to serve as the three members of the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan. Ms. Sooka will serve as Chair of the three-person commission.
 
The Council decided to establish, for a period of one year, the Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan at its thirty-first session on 23 March 2016, to monitor and report on the situation of human rights in South Sudan and make recommendations for its improvement. 
 
Through Human Rights Council resolution 31/20 on the situation of human rights in South Sudan, which was adopted by consensus, the 47-member body mandated the three-person Commission to assess the human rights situation in the country since December 2013, in order to establish facts in support of transitional justice, accountability, reconciliation and healing. 
The Commissioners, who will serve in their personal capacities, will provide guidance to the Government of South Sudan on transitional justice, accountability and reconciliation issues and will engage with international and regional mechanisms to promote accountability for human rights violations and abuses.
 
The Commission is scheduled to present a comprehensive written report to the Human Rights Council at its 34th regular session, in March 2017. 
 
Biographies of the members of the Commission of Human Rights in South Sudan
 
Ms. Yasmin Sooka (South Africa) is a leading human rights lawyer. She is currently the Executive Director of the Foundation for Human Rights in South. Ms. Sooka served on the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission from 1996-2001 and chaired the committee responsible for the final report from 2001-2003. She was appointed by the United Nations to serve on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Sierra Leone from 2002-2004. Since 2000, she has also been a member of the Advisory Body on the Review of Resolution 1325. In July 2010, Ms. Sooka was appointed to the three-member Panel of Experts advising the Secretary General on accountability for war crimes committed during the final stages of the war in Sri Lanka.
 
Mr. Kenneth Scott (United States) is a researcher on South Sudan with Amnesty International. He was appointed Amicus Curiae Prosecutor at the Special Tribunal for Lebanon on 4 March 2014. Mr. Scott was previously a senior prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) from 1998-2011. Prior to his work with ICTY, Mr. Scott was an Assistant United States Attorney and Chief of the Complex Prosecutions Section in the prosecution office, focusing primarily on complex white-collar and financial crimes from 1985-1997. He has also taught international law, constitutional law and the U.S. judicial system at U.S. universities.
 
Mr. Godfrey M Musila (Kenya) is currently a legal consultant for Avocats sans Frontieres established by the Ugandan judiciary. From 2015-2016, he served as the head of International Criminal Law Research Program at International Nuremberg Principles Academy in Germany. He was a lead researcher at African Union Commission of Inquiry on South Sudan (AUCISS) in 2014. As the director of Kenyan Truth, Justice and Reconciliation Commission (TJRC) in 2010, he conceptualised and authored several chapters on the said topic. Mr. Musila is also an experienced lecturer on international law, international criminal law and human rights law at universities in Africa including Kenya and South Africa.  
 
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