Human rights defenders call for SAsia regional mechanism

- Post Report, LALITPUR
Subodh Raj Pyakurel says a regional meeting of human rights commissions, where the mechanism will be discussed, has been planned

Nov 5, 2015-Rights defenders have concluded that there is a need of a regional mechanism of south Asian countries to safeguard human rights in the region.

Inaugurating a national workshop on South Asian Human Rights Mechanism on Wednesday, Anup Raj Sharma, chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission, said the mechanism was desirable to address the

common concerns of Saarc countries.

Sharma said the Commission would support citizen-led initiative to form a regional mechanism to promote human rights in the region. He said the NHRC has already signed an agreement with South Korea to guarantee the rights of Nepali labourers and that it will also sign a similar agreement

with Qatar.

“We have seen the failure of government in protecting human rights at times but vibrant civil society organisations in the region have proven that they can be true defenders of human rights,” he said.

Henri Tiphane, chairperson of Forum-Asia, said the protection of rights was crucial for quality life. Regretting the “blockade” imposed by India, he emphasised on

the need of a regional mechanism to raise and resolve

the issues.

The undeclared blockade by India for over a month has created a humanitarian crisis in Nepal. “Beside diplomatic efforts, human rights defenders should highlight the impact the blockade on people of Nepal,” said Yubaraj Sangroula, former Attorney General.

Sangroula said the mechanism was necessary to end the culture of impunity in the region. Subodh Raj Pyakurel, chairperson of the Informal Sector Service Centre said the effort to form a regional mechanism was initiated in 2010. “A regional mechanism will unite people of the region for their rights,” he said.

Pyakurel also informed that a regional meeting of human rights commissions has been planned, where a regional rights mechanism will be discussed.

A committee, led by Pyakurel, has been formed to lobby for the body. Sagroula, Ganesh BK, Milan Dharel, Dinesh Tripathi, Kamala Panthi, Nita Pokharel and Tej Kumari Tiwari are members of the committee.

Published: 05-11-2015 09:04

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