Oral Statement on the human rights situation in Africa at the 60th Ordinary Session of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights
In the last four ordinary sessions of the African Commission, Amnesty International has highlighted in its oral statements the patterns of large scale violations and abuses committed in the context of conflict by armed groups and government forces. Even though the nature and intensity of current conflicts in Africa vary considerably, they are all marred with gross and widespread human rights violations. In a number of African countries including in Cameroon, Central African Republic (CAR), Burundi, Libya, Nigeria, Sudan and South Sudan, such violations, including acts that constitute crimes under international law, continue to be committed with impunity. As such, the lack of accountability for these atrocities remains one of the common denominators and contributing factors to the cycle of violence in these countries. Amnesty International acknowledges and applauds the response by the African Commission to some of these violations. Indeed the Commission has responded to human rights violations committed in conflict situations through a relatively rich catalogue of approaches, including through the complaints mechanism, fact-finding missions, adoption of country-specific resolutions, and cooperation with relevant AU organs. In this statement, we briefly highlight the successes and challenges of the above-mentioned four approaches.