ODVV Statements at 29th Session of the Human...
Item 5: General Debate, Our right to Peace
In almost every part of the world human beings find reasons to resort to force and violence in addressing differences that we surely should attempt to resolve through negotiation and reason. This is being continued in the modern world and unfortunately technology is being used to ease the ways of conflicts.
As it was noted in the report, peace is not just the absence of conflict; peace is the creation of an environment where we all can be safe. Elimination of Nuclear weapons and the weapons of mass destructions can and does contribute positively to the pursuit of peace. This is while, countries that have developed these weapons even after NPT treaty, and also the ones that have actually used it, faced no consequences by the international community nor the international organizations. Israel for instance, continues its use of weapons for killing civilians and the supports of its allies, comes along with it. The allies who have themselves been violating the right to peace of Middle East for half of a century now, and ironically enough can’t stop lecturing the world on how to become peaceful. Such violations lead to the creation of groups such as ISIS that wants to respond to the attacks that have been made on them, by killing other innocent people. This cycle will make the world a chaos.
We believe we cannot solve problems with the same thinking that created them. What we need, is a change. A change in policies of international relations; a change to prefer lives of human beings over politics.
Accordingly, ODVV, calls upon the international community and the united nation to take the necessary measures (including military) to stop the ongoing atrocities committed by ISIS.
Item 4 : General Debate, Ongoing Unprecedented Atrocities in Iraq
Unfortunately, there is a lack of strong international political will to protect Iraqi civilians against IS which is going on committing ethnic cleansing in Iraq with impunity.
There are numerous reports of IS atrocities such as, the killing of 500 people in the city of Ramadi and forcing 8,000 to flee their homes, mass murders of civilians, including 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians , 300 Yezidi hostages and 150 women and underage girls. This is while the heinous pictures of the hostages who were burned alive are burned into the world memory.
More than 2 and a half million Iraqis, displaced because of the conflict are in need of shelter, food, water and safety. Many of them are living in tents, exposed to sever weather conditions. Refugee children are deprived of their right to education. Many refugees are suffering from chronic diseases and are traumatized by witnessing savage violence.
IS atrocities are not limited to Iraq, the terrorist group is involved in crimes in Syria, Egypt and even Saudi Arabia.
Regretting the fact that the fire of violence is burning at full blaze against civilians and minorities, the Organization for Defending Victims of Violence (ODVV) echoes the pledges of Iraqi NGOs for supporting both their people and government in the defense of their sovereignty.
In line with the serious concerns expressed in UN resolution A/HRC/28/L.29, ODVV calls on the international community to assist the Iraqi government to help the victims of IS crimes and seek urgent political solution to tragic humanitarian crisis created by the terrorist group.
The ironical reality that the Security Council ratifies resolutions against IS, including rsolutions 2199, 2178, 2170, while the terrorist group is committing atrocities with impunity, raises concerns over the UN’s deliberate disregard of IS actions.
Item3: General Debate, Economic Sanctions: Systematic Violation of Human Rights
Economic sanctions are imposed on Iran with different justifications. According to the Security Council sanctions are applied to effectuate five main outcomes: conflict resolution, non-proliferation, counter-terrorism, democratization, and the protection of civilians. However, decades of sanctions demonstrate that these objectives are rarely attained and it is crystal clear that, despite the justifications made, economic sanctions target the ordinary people, especially the most vulnerable population including children and patients who bear the brunt of economic instability caused by pressures.
Members of civil society have been expressing concerns about the notorious impact of the unilateral coercive measures on human rights, but the pledges have not been translated into results so far and the violation of Iranian people’s rights sadly persists.
Simply put, if the real objective of the sanctions was to hurt ordinary Iranians, they have been successful. If they were intended to compel Iran to cease its current nuclear program, they have not only failed, but have actually resulted in acceleration of the program, while blatantly violating the fundamental human rights of the most vulnerable part of the Iranian population.
The Organization for Defending Victims of Violence (ODVV) raises serious concerns about the violation of human rights, especially that of the vulnerable population, as a result of economic sanctions.
ODVV calls on both sanctioning and sanctioned countries to enhance their cooperation with the special rapporteur on UCM in order to facilitate his access to accurate information regarding the effects of sanctions on people’s lives.
ODVV also suggests the special rapporteur on UCM to call on NGOs active in affected countries to inform him of the detrimental impacts of sanctions on innocent people, and inform the UN with cases of human rights violations caused by the sanctions.
Item9: General Debate, Islamophobia
Muslims are still experiencing a range of discrimination, including verbal harassment, hate speech, violent attacks and religious profiling, even more than before.
Muslim lives matter too, but only in theory. In the two weeks after the attacks on the satirical magazine in Paris, French Muslims were victimized more than in all of 2014. The National Observatory Against Islamophobia says there were 128 anti-Muslim incidents reported in France between the Charlie Hebdo killings and Jan. 20th. This is while, the killing of the Muslim policeman Ahmad Merabat by Hebdo attackers speaks to the clear distinction that must be made in not confusing Muslims with extremists. Needless to mention the amount and the depth of media coverage in those days.
On the other hand, three Muslim students in the US, were shot, on an execution style, over a so-called parking dispute, not very long after Hebdo attacks. The murders were never referred to as religious hatred or a hate crime, and the murdered was never labeled as an extremists or anything other than a ‘’man’’ for that matter. Not very surprising, the incident was followed by no coverage or support from media nor the governments.
All this Mr. President, is to say: Muslims are tend to be important to the world when they are behind the gun, not in front of it. Although that old habits die hard, but we are too young to die.
Item 7: General Debate, Israel the Biggest Violator of Children's Rights
According to a UN report has said Israel killed more Palestinian civilians in 2014 than in any other year since the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip in 1967. According to the annual report (March2015) by the UN Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Israel’s activities in Gaza Strip, West Bank and East Quds left more than 2,314 Palestinians dead and 17,125 others injured, compared with 39 deaths and 3,964 injuries in 2013. Moreover, according to UNICEF, the 51-day conflict in Gaza in July 2014 killed 539 children and injured 2,956, most of them Palestinians now struggling with trauma and lifelong disabilities.
Despite these clear and credible reports, recently UN report catalogs Israeli attacks on Palestinian children but leaves Israel off ‘List of Shame’ of child rights abusers.
The list of children's rights violators was released just two months after a U.N. inquiry found that the Israeli military was responsible for seven attacks on U.N. schools in Gaza that were used as shelters during the 2014 war.
As a NGO we believe that the UN has provided tacit approval for Israeli army to continue carrying out grave violations of children’s rights with impunity which is clearly against the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC).
Our NGO expresses serious concerns on the discriminatory approaches on Palestinian children which raises concerns about reputation of the U.N impartiality in this case.
Accordingly our organization calls on the UN to identify the total number of children killed by Israeli army since the occupation of Palestinian territory, so as to clarify the extent of human rights violation and decide on the place of Israel in the ‘List of Shame’.
Panel Discussion on Effects of Terrorism on Human Rights, Will Iraq and Syria get rid of IS terrorism?
Organization for Defending Victims of Violence (ODVV) expresses its deep appreciation to the Human Rights Council for holding a panel discussion on the effects of terrorism on human rights.
Two of the issues raised by the distinguished panelists include: “how States ensure the protection of human rights against terrorism” and “how States deny safe haven to those who incite, plan, finance, support or commit terrorist acts.”
Regarding the former, ODVV wishes to point out the issue of ISIS terrorist attacks one more time, as a human right NGO being deeply concerned about the endless sufferings of desperate victims who struggle to survive the terrorism. Regretting the fact in some occasions States lack enough power to “ensure the protection of human rights against terrorism.”
World is witnessing recent IS atrocities including, the killing of 500 people in the city of Ramadi and forcing 8,000 to flee their homes, mass murders of civilians, including 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians , 300 Yezidi hostages 150 women and underage girls, and burning hostages alive.
Yet, it is seriously unfortunate to witness the hypocrisy of some of the countries in the region who on the one hand offer safe haven to terrorists, and actively support them while on the other hand condemn terrorist attacks done by ISIS. It is highly regrettable that these countries offer all sorts of support including military training, arms and financial resources to the terrorist groups in both Iraq and Syria.
ODVV urges the international community to Support Iraq and Syria people in the deadly struggle against terrorists.
ODVV also calls on the UN to take the lead in distinguishing the regional countries who are backing terrorists, ensuring that such kind of support will be stopped.