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In the framework of the mandate, the Special Rapporteur receives information on alleged violations of human rights resulting from the disposal of hazardous substances and wastes that is not environmentally sound. The Special Rapporteur may then write to the concerned government, either jointly with other special procedure mandate-holders, or independently. The Special Rapporteur may invite comment on the allegation and/or seek clarification, reminding the Government of its obligations under international law. He or she might further request information on steps being taken by the authorities to redress the situation in question.

The Special Rapporteur urges all Parties to respond promptly to communications and to take all steps necessary to redress the violations referred to.

Communications of the Special Rapporteur can take various forms including:

a) Urgent appeals which are used in cases where the alleged violations are time-sensitive in terms of involving loss of life, life-threatening situations or either imminent or ongoing damage of a very grave nature to victims that cannot be addressed in a timely manner by the procedure of allegation letters.

b) Allegation letters which are used to communicate information about violations that are said to have already occurred or in cases not covered by urgent appeals.

More on submitting individual complaints

The mandate regularly comments on the adequacy of normative and policy developments with international standards for the human rights implications of hazardous wastes.

Find below links to letters sent by the UN Special Rapporteur concerning national norms, and responses from Government to these communications.