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November 30, 2009

Consideration of UPR Reports

Statement by the Delegation of the United States of America

Thank you, Mr. President.

We thank the delegation of Cyprus.

The United States appreciates the comprehensive approach that Cyprus took in the preparation of its national report.

The United States is concerned by reports of police abuse of detainees, including cases of abuse directed at immigrants, asylum seekers, and other foreign nationals.

The United States recommends that the Government of Cyprus ensure such incidents are prevented by strengthening legislation to protect the rights of arrested and detained individuals from physical mistreatment and ensuring they are afforded a full complement of due process rights in accordance with its obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. The United States also recommends that the Government of Cyprus finalize a professional code of conduct for police and security forces, as well as investigate alleged breaches, and prosecute as appropriate, to strengthen accountability and prevent future abuses and violations.

The United States is concerned by cases of violence against women, child abuse, trafficking in persons, discrimination against Turkish Cypriots living in the government-controlled area, discrimination against Roma and members of minority ethnic and national groups, and discrimination against homosexuals.

The United States recommends that the Government of Cyprus ensure the effective implementation of existing legislation on non-discrimination, including by consulting with civil society, disseminating information to vulnerable groups about legal protections that are available to them and directing appropriate resources where needed to improve implementation.

The United States notes Cyprus’ actions to promote the equality of women in employment, including the 2002 Law on Equal Pay between Men and Women for the Same Work or for Work of Equal Value and the 2007-2013 National Action Plan on Gender Equality.

The United States recommends that Cyprus strengthen enforcement of its existing legal framework protecting the equality of women in employment, particularly for those in unskilled and low-wage positions. This can be accomplished by focusing the Ministry of Labor and Social Insurance on gender perspectives in all aspects of policy enforcement and by promoting governmental and civil society efforts to educate women about formal grievance and dispute mechanisms.

Thank You