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11 April 2007

The Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, Miloon Kothari, will undertake an official visit to South Africa from 12 to 24 April 2007 at the invitation of the authorities.

During his visit, the Special Rapporteur will examine and report on the status of realization of the right to adequate housing and other related rights in the country, with a particular attention to issues of women and housing, non-discrimination, rights of indigenous peoples, homelessness, evictions, security of tenure as well as access to and affordability of adequate housing, land and civic services.

The Special Rapporteur will travel to various urban and rural locations, including Pretoria, Johannesburg, Kimberly, Limpopo, Pietersburg, Cape Town and Durban.

Mr. Kothari will engage in dialogue with the Government and representatives of civil society on steps taken to secure rights related to his mandate; and try to identify practical solutions and best practices in the further realization of these rights. The Special Rapporteur will also attend a large number of civic forums and meetings that are being organized in different parts of the country, in particular with women groups, Indigenous Peoples organizations and non-governmental organizations active in the field of the right to adequate housing.

The Special Rapporteur will give preliminary observations on his visit on 24 April at a press conference in Pretoria.

Mr. Kothari was appointed in September 2000 as Special Rapporteur on adequate housing. His mandate involves reporting annually on the status throughout the world of the realization of the rights that are related to the right to adequate housing, and identifying practical solutions and good practices towards this end. An architect by training, Mr. Kothari has extensive experience in the area of housing and land rights. Since his appointment as Special Rapporteur, he has carried out many missions and visits to countries such as Romania, Mexico, Peru, Afghanistan, Kenya, Brazil, Iran, Cambodia, Australia and Spain.

For further information on the mandate and work of the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing, please consult the website of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights at: http://www.ohchr.org/english/issues/housing/index.htm