ACHPR 79: The African Commission’s Resolution on Sudan signals a positive step towards concrete engagement on the resolution of the conflict

AFP

The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) welcomes the adoption of a resolution on Sudan by the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights during its 79th Ordinary Session (ACHPR 79). The resolution contains the provision for a fact-finding mission to be deployed in Sudan and a network of civilian protection established in partnership with Sudanese civil society. FIDH’s engagement at the 79th African Commission session, also raised concerns about other crisis and concerning situations including those obtaining in the Sahel region, DRC, Chad and Rwanda.

21 June 2023. The African Commission adopted on 3 June 2024 its fourth resolution since the outbreak of the conflict in Sudan in April 2023. In it, the African Commission revealed two key plans that will scale up on its response to the crisis in Sudan. The resolution indicates that the Commission will deploy a fact-finding mission to Sudan to investigate human rights violations and breaches of humanitarian law, including on gender dimensions that could constitute international crimes.

For over a year FIDH and its Sudanese member organisations, the African Center for Justice and Peace Studies (ACJPS), the Sudanese Human Rights Monitor (SHRM) and other partners have been calling for more decisive action by the African Commission and the African Union that deploys all the available tools for responding to the conflict in Sudan.

"We welcome this decision by the African Commission to deploy a fact-finding mission to Sudan as it is one of its tools under its protection mandate. Truth in conflict zones is essential, especially when we are confronted to the scale of human rights abuses we are seeing in Sudan currently", said Ahmed Elzobier, Executive Director at SHRM.

The resolution also alludes to the intention by the African Commission to collaborate with the United Nations Fact finding mission on Sudan and Sudanese civil society in establishing a network for the protection of civilians, with a focus on conflict-related sexual violence to monitor and document gross violations committed against civilians, while also producing reports.

The establishment of a network to monitor and report on conflict-related sexual violence that is increasingly an endemic part of the conflict in Sudan is a positive step towards acknowledging the need for actions that will ensure the bodies of women and girls are not weaponised by the belligerents.

"FIDH urges the other actors working towards the resolution of the conflict, including the UN and its Human Rights Council, to extend a similar collaborative spirit in the execution of their approaches and work, similar to the expression by the African Commission to ensure a more holistic approach towards addressing the crisis in Sudan", said Prof. Mabassa Fall, FIDH Permanent Representative to the African Union.

FIDH’s engagement at the 79th African Commission session, also raised concerns about other crisis and concerning situations including those obtaining in the Sahel region, Democratic Republic of Congo, Chad and Rwanda. While no resolutions were adopted by the Commission during the session FIDH urges for continued vigilance and decisive action by the African Union aimed at reducing civilian suffering, and reinforcing democracy and citizen freedoms in these countries and the Sahel belt.

Read more