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UN calls on Nepal to reverse NHRC appointments that are ‘inconsistent with international standards’

National Human Rights Commission

Kathmandu, April 27

A group of human rights experts in the United Nations has said the recent appointments of five commissioners in the National Human Rights Commission of Nepal are “inconsistent with international standards”.

Clément Nyaletsossi Voule (special rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association), Tae-Ung Baik (chair), Henrikas Mickevičius, (vice-chair), Aua Balde, Bernard Duhaime and Luciano Hazan (Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances), Mary Lawlor (Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders), Diego García-Sayán (special rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers), Nils Melzer (special rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment) in a joint statement say, “We call on the government to reverse the appointments to the constitutional bodies and facilitate a new process marked by openness, transparency, broad consultation and participation.”

“This appointment process has failed to implement the essential requirements of the Paris Principles, including the need for an open, transparent and participatory process with broad consultations,” say the experts.

Earlier in March, three international human rights organisations–Human Rights Watch, the International Commission of Jurists, and Amnesty International–had also urged the government to rescind the appointments.

At least two writ petitions challenging the appointments are pending at the Supreme Court.

In February, Prime Minister KP Sharma Oli-led government had appointed officials of various constitutional bodies including the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority and the National Human Rights Commission without a parliamentary hearing, which many people claim is unconstitutional.

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