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Human Rights Council President appoints Mohamed Chande Othman to serve as new chairperson of Ethiopia Commission

21 December 2022

GENEVA (21 December 2022) -- The President of the Human Rights Council, Ambassador Federico Villegas (Argentina), has decided to appoint Mr. Mohamed Chande Othman of Tanzania to the Council-created Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia as its new Chairperson.

Mr. Othman’s appointment comes following the resignation of Kaari Betty Murungi as Chairperson and Member of the Commission. Ambassador Villegas thanks Ms. Murungi for her role on the Commission and wishes her well in her future endeavours.

A former Chief Justice of Tanzania (2010-2017), Mr. Othman was appointed by UN Secretary-General Ban-Ki-moon in 2015 as Chairperson of the Independent Panel of Experts on the Dag Hammarskjöld Investigations. In 2019-2020, he served as a member of the Independent Expert Review of the International Criminal Court and the Rome Statute System, having been appointed by the Assembly of State Parties of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

Mr. Othman’s previous experience includes that of Prosecutor General of Timor-Leste (2000-2001), Chief of Prosecutions of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (1998-2000), and Senior Legal and Justice Sector Adviser for UNDP-Cambodia. He has also served as a member of the UN Human Rights Council’s High-Level Commission of Inquiry into the Situation in Lebanon following the Israel-Lebanon Armed Conflict in 2006 and as the UN Human Rights Council’s Independent Expert on the human rights situation in the Sudan (2009-2010).

The three-person Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia was created by the UN Human Rights Council on 17 December 2021 with a mandate to investigate alleged human rights violations and abuses in Ethiopia committed since 3 November 2020 by all parties to the conflict. On 7 October 2022, the Council decided to renew the mandate of the Commission for a further period of one year.

The Commission is scheduled to deliver its next update to the Human Rights Council during its 52nd regular session (27 February-31 March 2023).


For more information and media requests, please contact: Rolando Gómez, HRC Media Officer, at [email protected], Todd Pitman, Media Adviser, at [email protected], Matthew Brown, HRC Public Information Officer, at [email protected], or Pascal Sim, HRC Public Information Officer, at [email protected]