Human Rights Watch

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AU: Uphold Rights Body’s Independence

Strengthen, Not Weaken African Commission Mandate

Friday 26 April 2019


(Sharm El Sheikh, April 26, 2019) – The African Union should reconsider its decision to restrict the autonomy and mandate of the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights, Human Rights Watch said today. The 64th Ordinary Session of the African Commission opened in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt on April 24 and will conclude on May 14, 2019. In June 2018, the AU Executive Council, consisting of foreign ministers of member states, declared that the African Commission only had “independence of a functional nature, and not independence from the same organs that created the body.” The council also decided that AU policy organs would revise the criteria for the commission to grant observer status to nongovernmental organizations in line with existing AU accreditation criteria, “which take African values and traditions into account.”

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