U.S. Statement on Sudan – HRC36 Resolution L.19

U.S. Statement as delivered by Jason Mack

Human Rights Council 36th Session
Geneva, September 29, 2017 

Thank you, Mr. President.

We appreciate the spirit of engagement of Sudan in negotiating this resolution and thank the Africa Group for their leadership.  We were pleased to be an early co-sponsor of this resolution.  We welcome Sudan’s cooperation with the Independent Expert and stated commitment to improving the human rights situation.

While we recognize some positive developments over the last year in Sudan, we remain deeply concerned by the overall human rights situation in the country.  We are troubled by incidents of harassment and arrests targeting representatives of civil society organizations, including detentions of persons believed to be held solely for their legitimate work on protecting and promoting human rights.  The resolution rightly calls upon the Government of Sudan to promote and protect the rights to freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly.  We also have serious concerns stemming from reports of the excessive use of force and torture by the Sudanese authorities.  We reiterate that there is a need to protect the freedom of religion or belief for all in Sudan.  In this regard, we are particularly concerned by the demolition of churches and places of worship, and incidents of harassment and arrests of religious leaders and members of religious minorities.

Mr. President,

The United States welcomes the work of the Independent Expert and his invaluable reporting on the human rights situation in Sudan.  We are therefore pleased to see the mandate renewed for another year.

It is our sincere hope that Sudan continues to cooperate with the Independent Expert, Office of the High Commissioner, and other stakeholders toward a continued, sustained improvement in the human rights situation in Sudan as this resolution says.

Thank you, Mr. President.