Thursday, April 03, 2008

"Governmet orders closure of UN's human rights office"

... as reported by Radio Ecclesia.

In spite of being elected to the UN’s Human Rights Council in May 2007, the Angolan government has apparently asked the UN’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) to close its office and leave Angola.

This article is in Portuguese and doesn’t give too much information as to why exactly they have been asked to leave. It’s interesting because in its letter presenting its candidacy for the Human Rights Council seat, the government lists its continued collaboration and dialogue with the OHCHR as part of its plan for human rights in Angola. Hmmm.

The outgoing representative, Vergard Bye, says the following about human rights and Angola:

A violação mais importante aqui em Angola e em geral em África é a violação dos
direitos sócio-económicos e sobre tudo o facto de Angola ser o país com maior
cresimento económico do mundo. Isto contrasta com alguns dado como por exemplo
de Angola ser o segundo país do mundo em mortalidade infantil.

My rough translation: The important violation in Angola, and in Africa in general,
is the violation of socio-economic rights, above all the fact that Angola is the
country with the biggest economic growth in the work. This contrasts with
data that, for example, shows Angola ranks as the second country in the world in infant mortality. (Emphasis mine.)

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