Human Rights Committee Adopts Reports on Follow-Up to Concluding Observations Concerning Finland, Paraguay, Tunisia and Uzbekistan


The Human Rights Committee today adopted reports on follow-up to concluding observations concerning Finland, Paraguay, Tunisia and Uzbekistan.

Imeru Tamerat Yigezu, Committee Expert and the Special Rapporteur on follow-up to concluding observations, presented the assessment of the responses provided by Finland, Paraguay, Tunisia and Uzbekistan. The overall recommended action for all the four assessments was to send a letter to each of the States parties informing them of the discontinuation of the follow-up procedure and that further information requested by the Committee should be addressed in their next periodic reports, which were due in 2026 for all States parties under assessment.

Regarding Finland, the Committee reiterated its recommendation to the State party to combat discrimination, hate speech and incitement to discrimination or violence on the grounds of race, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation and gender identity. While welcoming the State party’s efforts to enhance the accessibility and effectiveness of restraining orders and increase shelters for victims of violence and their families, the Committee regretted the lack of information on measures taken to encourage the reporting of cases of violence against women, and that the number of family places in shelters remained insufficient. Further, the Committee welcomed the draft law to amend the Sami Parliament Act submitted in December 2023, but regretted the continued delays and was concerned that the draft law had reportedly been diluted. It requested further information in this regard. It also called on the State party to review existing legislation, policies and practices regulating activities that could have an impact on the rights and interests of the Sami people; and consider ratifying the Indigenous and Tribal Peoples Convention, 1989 of the International Labour Organization.

Concerning Paraguay, the Committee noted the State party’s efforts to search for missing persons and identify remains, as well as to ensure compensation for victims and their families. However, it regretted that many requests for compensation had resulted in a negative decision. The Committee reiterated its recommendation to investigate all cases of serious human rights violations that occurred during the dictatorship and the transition period and bring those responsible to justice without delay; to give victims and families prompt access to compensation; and to accelerate the search for missing persons and the identification of remains. The Committee also called for information on the status of the bill establishing the special procedure for the lifting of pre-trial detention and of the project on strengthening restorative justice for adolescent offenders. Finally, the Committee reiterated its recommendations to strengthen efforts to combat corruption within the judiciary and review the laws and operations of the institutions responsible for administering justice, appointing judges and prosecutors, and ensuring judicial ethics.

For Tunisia, the Committee repeated its call on the State party to finalise the establishment of the Constitutional Court, and noted with concern that the new Constitution adopted in 2022 weakened the independence of such a court by providing for the direct appointment of its members by presidential decree and reducing the diversity of its members. Concerned at reports of arbitrary detention of political figures, revocation of judges, and continued misuse of house arrest, the Committee reiterated its recommendation to end the continuous extension of the state of emergency and restrictions on freedom of movement, and violations of the right to privacy. The Committee further regretted that the legislative and regulatory framework governing the use of force for the maintenance of law and order still did not fully conform to international standards, calling for this to be addressed. It also called for all allegations of excessive use of force and extrajudicial killings by State agents during demonstrations to be investigated promptly, thoroughly and impartially; for those responsible to be prosecuted and punished; and for victims to be provided with redress.

Concerning Uzbekistan, the Committee called on the State party to ensure the implementation of all pending Views adopted by the Committee. Further, the Committee asked the State party to take robust measures to eradicate torture and ill-treatment. It noted the strengthening of legislative provisions relating to compensation for victims of torture and ill-treatment but found that only one victim had been awarded compensation during the period of the report. It called on the State to ensure that all persons deprived of liberty had access to an independent and effective complaints mechanism, and that all cases of reprisal were investigated, and perpetrators were prosecuted and punished appropriately. Finally, the Committee noted amendments to the Code of Criminal Procedure introduced in 2020 aimed at strengthening safeguards for all persons deprived of their liberty, and called for information on the implementation of these measures. The Committee also repeated its call for judicial reviews of detentions to satisfy the standards required under article 9 (4) of the Covenant, and for alternative measures to detention and imprisonment to be used for juvenile offenders where appropriate.

The draft reports were adopted by the Committee as amended during the discussion and will be available on the web page dedicated to the follow-up procedure for concluding observations.

The Human Rights Committee’s one hundred and fortieth session is being held from 4 to 28 March 2024. All the documents relating to the Committee’s work, including reports submitted by States parties, can be found on the session’s webpage. Meeting summary releases can be found here. The webcast of the Committee’s public meetings can be accessed via the UN Web TV webpage.

The Committee will next meet at 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, 28 March, to close its one hundred and fortieth session.

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