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Working Group on the use of mercenaries
09 July 2020
Issued by Multiple Mechanisms
Twice a year, the Working Group on the use of mercenaries issues calls for inputs to inform thematic studies to be presented at the Human Rights Council in its September session and at the General Assembly in October.
This report builds on the Working Group's 2017 report regarding the use of private security providers in places of deprivation of liberty, including immigration-related detention facilities (A/72/286) in which it concluded that outsourcing creates great risks of human rights abuses, including impediments to accountability and remedy for victims. In its 2017 report, the Working Group had also called on States to terminate the practice of outsourcing the overall operation of immigration-related detention facilities to for-profit private security companies.
Furthermore, in 2019, the Working Group organized a panel event on "The Use of PMSCs in Migrant Detention Centers", in which it drew attention to the continuing use of a broad range of security services in immigration and border management in different regions of the world, going well beyond immigration detention facilities. To identify the key human rights challenges posed by the use of private security services in immigration and border management, the Working Group decided to study current trends and practices in contracting private security services in countries of origin, transit and destination of migrants, including related regulation, monitoring and oversight.
On this basis, the Working Group decided to dedicate a specific thematic report on the role of PMSCs in immigration and border management, with the aim to formulate concrete and practical recommendations aiming to ensure that the human rights of all migrants are protected in situations in which States contract private providers for security services in immigration and border management.
On 5 October 2020, the Working Group on the use of mercenaries and Privacy International co-hosted an online panel discussion with leading experts on the impact of the use of private military and security services in immigration and border management on the protection of the rights of all migrants. The event followed the presentation of the Working Group's report to the 45th session of the Human Rights Council.
All submissions received are published below, unless the submitter clearly indicated that they did not wish to have their input be made publicly available when submitting their response.
While the Working Group welcomed any information deemed pertinent to the issue, it was particularly interested in the following areas:
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