ORAL INTERVENTION - THE OBSERVATORY
AFRICAN COMMISSION ON HUMAN AND PEOPLES' RIGHTS
56th ordinary session
Banjul, The Gambia
April 21 - May 7, 2015
Contribution of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)
World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT)
In the framework of their joint programme,
The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders
Madam the Special Rapporteur for Human Rights Defenders,
Madam and Sir Commissioners,
Madam and Sir Delegates,
FIDH and OMCT, in the framework of the Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights
Defenders, once again express their grave concern about the situation of human rights
defenders in Africa.
Arbitrary arrests, detentions and judicial harassment of human rights defenders are still used
as means to persecute and silence human rights defenders throughout the African continent.
In Algeria, with already ten of their colleagues in detention, labour rights activists
Abdelhamid Brahimi, Ferhat Missa and Youssef Sultani are judicially harassed for
criticising the police on Facebook and for their participation to peaceful demonstrations in El
Oued. Their trial is ongoing.
In Burundi, Pierre Claver Mbonimpa, was re-arrested on April 27, 2015 for publicly
speaking against a third mandate of President Pierre Nkurunziza.
In Cameroon, Franklin Mohwa, president of Frontline Fighters for Citizens Interests (FFCI)
is arbitrarily detained and prosecuted, so is Célestin Yandal, president of the Touboro Youth
In the DRC, the trial of detained human rights defender Christopher Ngoyi Mutamba,
National Chairman of the NGO “Synergie Congo culture et développement” and Coordinator
of the platform Civil Society of Congo, opened on March 4, without any prior notice to the
defendant who is facing a heavy prison sentence.
In Egypt, many human rights defenders, including Yara Sallam, Sanaa Seif and Alaa Abdel
Fattah are still arbitrarily detained for exercising their legitimate right to peaceful assembly.
While they are not currently detained, human rights lawyers, Mahienour El-Massry, Amr
Abu-Elkhair and Azza Soliman; are still facing judicial harassment.
In Sudan, Adil Bakheit, member of the Board of Trustees of the Sudan Human Rights
Monitor (SHRM), was arrested on April 16, 2015.