Oral Statement to the 25th Session of the UN Human Rights Council: Human Rights Defenders under threat in Bangladesh and Cambodia

On March 10, 2014, Lawyers’ Rights Watch Canada and Lawyers for Lawyers thank the Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights Defenders for her contributions since 2008 and for her final report to Council. LRWC and L4L share all concerns raised, including: abuse of legislation to harass human rights defenders; particular risks faced by lawyers and by defenders working on environmental issues or land rights; impunity for those who attack defenders; and reprisals against defenders who cooperate with the United Nations.
In Bangladesh, staff of Odhikar, an NGO in special consultative status with ECOSOC, have been harassed, arbitrarily detained, intimidated and subjected to surveillance by authorities. Odhikar Secretary, Adilur Rahman Khan, a lawyer, and Odhikar director ASM Nasiruddin Elan were held in arbitrary detention[2] for 62 and 25 days respectively before receiving pretrial release pending trial of charges under the Information and Communication Technology Act, 2006, laid as retaliation for reporting details of alleged extra-judicial killing of 61 protestors by security forces on 5-6 May 2013.

SR-HRDs-CambodiaBangladesh-10-March-2014-F  (full text in Bangla, PDF)


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