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UN Independent Expert launches third mission to Sudan and South Sudan

GENEVA (27 May 2011) – United Nations Independent Expert Mohamed Chande Othman will be conducting his third mission to the country from 31 May to 8 June 2011 to gather first-hand information of the general human rights situation in Sudan and South Sudan.

“I will focus in particular on the arrests and detentions in the North, the armed confrontations that have taken place between the SPLA and armed militia groups in the transitional areas, the ongoing conflict in Darfur and the deteriorating situation in Abyei,” said the Independent Expert designated by the UN Human Rights Council to report and advise on the situation of human rights in the Sudan.

During his nine-day mission, Mr. Othman will visit Khartoum, Darfur, South Sudan and the Transitional Areas, where he will meet with officials from the Government of Sudan and the Government of South Sudan, South Sudan Human Rights Commission, members of the diplomatic corps, civil society actors and UN agencies.

The Independent Expert will also meet with the Special Representative of the UN Secretary General on Sexual Violence in Armed Conflict, Ms. Margaret Wallstrom who will be visiting the Sudan, including the South, from 3 to 9 June.

The Independent Expert is due to present his finding at the 18th session of the Human Rights Council in September 2011.

The mandate of the Independent Expert on the human rights situation in Sudan was created by the UN Human Rights Council on 18 June 2009. Justice Mohamed Chande Othman was first appointed by the Council in October 2009. As Independent Expert, he serves in his individual capacity, independently from any government or organization. Justice Chande is currently the Chief Justice of Tanzania, and formerly worked as Prosecutor-General in East Timor. He was also a member of the High Level Commission of Inquiry on Lebanon and Chief of Prosecutions at the Arusha-based International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.

OHCHR – Country Page: Sudan: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/AfricaRegion/Pages/SDIndex.aspx

For further information and media requests, please contact Melissa Fernandez: (Tel. + 079-444 6129 / email: mfernandez@ohchr.org) or write to sudan@ohchr.org.