Universal Periodic Review of Libya’s human rights record before the United Nations, demands an end to the policy of impunity


مجلس حقوق الانسان

Libya’s human rights record will be examined by the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Working Group for the third time on Wednesday, 11 November 2020. Its first and second UPR reviews took place in November 2010 and May 2015.

The third report is being considered within the framework of the work of the thirty-sixth session of the Working Group on the Universal Periodic Review that was currently held between (2 to 13 November 2020) at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.

As is being done in the universal periodic review mechanism, the three reports on Libya will be presented, the first of which is the national report,the report provided by the official Libyan government, and then the report of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, which contains information provided by independent human rights experts and teams known as the Special Rapporteurs and the human rights treaty bodies and other United Nations entities in addition to information provided by other stakeholders, including NGOs and national human rights institutions, which is known as a shadow report.

The report issued by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on Libya recommends ratifying or acceding to international treaties, stopping gross violations of human rights, and putting an end to the policy of impunity. The report, which was prepared last May and will be presented on november 11 , 2020, before the Human Rights Council, includes a compilation of information contained in the reports of treaty bodies and special procedures and other relevant UN documents.

In terms of international obligations and cooperation with international human rights mechanisms and bodies; The Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Workers, Migrants, and Members of Their Families has noted that Libya has ratified nearly all basic human rights treaties.

However, it indicated that the State party has not yet ratified the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture, the Additional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights aiming to abolish the death penalty, and conventions related to immigration and work,

The committee recommended that Libya considers ratifying or acceding to the aforementioned instruments as soon as possible. It also recommended that it consider making the declarations provided for in Articles 76 and 77 of the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families, and ratifying the Refugee Convention and its protocols.

In the national human rights framework, the High Commissioner for Refugees recommended that Libya support Article 10 of the 2011 Libyan Interim Constitutional Declaration prohibiting the extradition of political refugees.


It also recommended that Libya amends Law No. 6 (1987), Law No. 2 (2004) and Law No. 9 (2010) in order to decriminalize irregular migration.

The Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons recommended that priority be given to drawing up a national road map in order to develop a common strategy, and to help guide and ensure a coordinated process in order to address appropriate and effective methods of internal displacement.

With regard to the implementation of international human rights obligations, the Committee on Migrant Workers has expressed its concern about reports indicating discriminatory treatment of migrant workers and members of their families, especially those from sub-Saharan Africa, and those belonging to religious minorities, especially Christians.

The Committee on Migrant Workers expressed its concern about serious acts of violence, including unlawful killings, torture, ill-treatment, sexual violence, physical and verbal abuse, extortion, threats and intimidation against migrant workers and their family members, and referred to allegations of involvement of public authorities, including the Anti-Illegal Immigration Agency and the Libyan Coast Guard. In serious violence, these crimes are often linked with impunity.

The report referred to the implementation of political arrests, restrictions on freedoms and the killing of journalists, as it indicated that 23 cases of journalist murder were recorded in Libya since 2008, without information on the status of investigations in these cases. The report focused on widespread impunity and the absence of the rule of law, noting that judges and prosecutors were at risk of murder, court bombings, assault and kidnapping throughout 2014 and 2015.

With regard to economic and social rights, the report emphasized that conflict and armed conflict disrupted many health programs and affected health services. Education has also been affected, and schools have been affected by the armed conflict, whether through closures or attacks.

The report indicated violations against women, including intimidation and deportation, as well as sexual violence, and that this focused on immigrant women. The report covered the violations that children are subjected to, including killings, injuries and abductions. The report focused on violations related to migrants arriving in Libya and their need for protection, and stopping the discrimination they face.

The session will be a series of interactive discussions between the country under review and the rest of the UN member states, and provide  recommendations to the Libyan government.

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