SOMALIA: Federal Government of Somalia welcomes HRW report (Press Statement)

The Federal Government of Somalia and Human Rights Watch share the same agenda of defending and championing human rights in Somalia and welcome today’s report.

Government spokesperson, said:

“Rape and sexual violence against women are completely unacceptable in Somali culture, are against our laws and have no place in the new Somalia. The Federal Government of Somalia is determined and committed to the promotion and protection of human rights and tackling the root causes of sexual violence and exploitation.

“After two decades of civil war our state institutions in the new Somalia are in their infancy and it will take time to develop and evolve these institutions so that they inspire public confidence. There is no space for impunity in Somalia; men found guilty of rape in recent months have faced the most severe sentence under Somali law.

“Practical steps have already been taken to put an end to sexual violence with government troops now receiving training on human rights and gender equality. The government will adopt any suitable recommendations made by the technical committee.

“We appreciate the response of Human Rights Watch. However, we believe that the situation is more nuanced. We invite Human Rights Watch and other international organizations to support Somali Government in its effort to fight Sexual Violence and other Human Rights abuses.

“It is important to note Somalia’s proactive engagement with the United Nations Human Rights Council since 2008 that have resulted into the adoption of ten important resolutions with an unprecedented number of co-sponsorships from member states across all the regional groups, the positive outcome of its first cycle of Universal Periodic Review in 2011 and the acceptance of 151 recommendations out of 155 as well as the two high level interactive dialogue sessions.

Additionally, on the 27 August 2013 the Council of Ministers adopted the historic post transition Human Rights Road Map in the aftermath of a broad-based consultations inter alia with civil society groups. At the end of that extraordinary meeting of the Cabinet, H.E. Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon ruled that 27 August would become the day of human rights in Somalia!

“Time has come for the international community to proactively engage with the Federal Government of Somalia in order to promote and protect all the human rights especially of the most vulnerable through the timely and tangible enhancement of the line institutions at national and sub-national levels with benchmarks on both sides”.

END

Ahmed Adan
Prime Minister’s Media Office
Mogadishu, Somalia

Phone: +252 (0) 616 44 00 28
Email: media@opm.gov.so

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