SG in Cambodia: Today, the SG and Cambodian PM Hun Sen met in Phnom Penh, discussing various issues. Human rights matters featured prominently, as the SG highlighted the advocacy role of the OHCHR and the value of the UN Office in Phnom Penh. The discussion also focused on the work of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) and the SG urged the Government of Cambodia to respect this independent body, stressing that even he should refrain from attempting to influence its decisions. They also discussed the November 7 elections in Myanmar and the SG reaffirmed the UN’s long-term commitment to the people there.
High Commissioner on WikiLeaks: High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay stated that the information disclosed by WikiLeaks intensifies her concerns that serious international human rights law violations have occurred in Iraq, including torture and ill-treatment of detainees, adding that the U.S. and Iraqi authorities should investigate the allegations. Pillay urges Iraq to ratify the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and its Optional Protocol. In addition, she urges the Iraq to facilitate UNAMI Human Rights Team visits to monitor the human rights situation in detention facilities.
UN Efforts in Haiti: the UN is continuing to work to curb the cholera outbreak in Haiti, which OCHA says has affected 3,769 people and resulted in 284 deaths. With the Government and its humanitarian partners, the UN is strengthening primary heath care in 80 health centers, as well as reinforcing ten Cholera Treatment Centers and eight hospitals treating the most severe cases. For its part, UNICEF has distributed medical supplies and food, while MINUSTAH is providing thousands of liters of water on a daily basis. UNFPA is also distributing 22,000 standard hygiene kits to help reduce and prevent the spread of the disease, targeting pregnant women.