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UN Plaza: Rape in the Congo

In this week’s edition of UN Plaza, I speak with filmmaker Lisa Jackson, whose documentary The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo premiered on HBO this week.

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UN Plaza: Rape in the Congo

In this week’s edition of UN Plaza, I speak with filmmaker Lisa Jackson, whose documentary The Greatest Silence: Rape in the Congo premiered on HBO this week.

| Leave a comment

Senegale Changes Constitution to Try Former Chadian Leader

From the UN News Center:

The top United Nations human rights official has welcomed changes to Senegal’s constitution to make it possible for national courts to try crimes against humanity, paving the way for former Chadian leader Hissene Habre to be tried for alleged crimes committed during the 1980s.

Mr. Habre ruled Chad from 1982 to 1990, when he was overthrown and went into exile in Senegal, where he has lived ever since.

Senegal’s National Assembly adopted the latest amendment to the constitution on Tuesday, which together with previous changes allows the country’s legal system to deal with such cases.

High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour welcomed the move as “a very positive development in the struggle to strengthen accountability and an important step forward in the never-ending fight against impunity.”

During Mr. Habre’s rule, thousands of Chadians were allegedly tortured, and unlawful killings and other serious human rights violations took place. He was charged in February 2000 by a lower court in Dakar, the Senegalese capital, but an appeals court later ruled that Senegalese courts did not have the legal competence to try such cases if they were perpetrated in another country.

Read Arbour’s full statement.

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Senegale Changes Constitution to Try Former Chadian Leader

From the UN News Center:

The top United Nations human rights official has welcomed changes to Senegal’s constitution to make it possible for national courts to try crimes against humanity, paving the way for former Chadian leader Hissene Habre to be tried for alleged crimes committed during the 1980s.

Mr. Habre ruled Chad from 1982 to 1990, when he was overthrown and went into exile in Senegal, where he has lived ever since.

Senegal’s National Assembly adopted the latest amendment to the constitution on Tuesday, which together with previous changes allows the country’s legal system to deal with such cases.

High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour welcomed the move as “a very positive development in the struggle to strengthen accountability and an important step forward in the never-ending fight against impunity.”

During Mr. Habre’s rule, thousands of Chadians were allegedly tortured, and unlawful killings and other serious human rights violations took place. He was charged in February 2000 by a lower court in Dakar, the Senegalese capital, but an appeals court later ruled that Senegalese courts did not have the legal competence to try such cases if they were perpetrated in another country.

Read Arbour’s full statement.

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More Khalilzad Speculation

_13779_khalilzad-16-6-2005.jpg

The Independent today adds fuel to persistent rumors that US Ambassador to the UN Zalmay Khalilzad has his eyes on the Afghan Presidency.

Mr Khalilzad played a major role in Mr Karzai becoming President after the fall of the Taliban. But the Afghan ruler’s popularity has slipped and he has been increasingly at odds with his Western backers, criticising British policy in Helmand and blocking the appointment of Lord [Paddy] Ashdown…as the UN envoy to Kabul. But Mr Khalilzad has himself been accused of undermining Lord Ashdown by failing to support him adequately at the UN for the Afghan job.

These rumors have been floating around the UN for a long while, and Ambassador Khalilzad certainly did not do much to tamper down speculation by announcing his impending retirement on Afghan television station this week. Still, I think we have to take him at his word when he says he does not seek office in Afghanistan. Khalilzad, after all, is a cabinet level American official. It would seem wrong to question his allegiance.

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More Khalilzad Speculation

_13779_khalilzad-16-6-2005.jpg

The Independent today adds fuel to persistent rumors that US Ambassador to the UN Zalmay Khalilzad has his eyes on the Afghan Presidency.

Mr Khalilzad played a major role in Mr Karzai becoming President after the fall of the Taliban. But the Afghan ruler’s popularity has slipped and he has been increasingly at odds with his Western backers, criticising British policy in Helmand and blocking the appointment of Lord [Paddy] Ashdown…as the UN envoy to Kabul. But Mr Khalilzad has himself been accused of undermining Lord Ashdown by failing to support him adequately at the UN for the Afghan job.

These rumors have been floating around the UN for a long while, and Ambassador Khalilzad certainly did not do much to tamper down speculation by announcing his impending retirement on Afghan television station this week. Still, I think we have to take him at his word when he says he does not seek office in Afghanistan. Khalilzad, after all, is a cabinet level American official. It would seem wrong to question his allegiance.

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