Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Switzerland, Liechtenstein


Human Rights Council - 28th Regular Session

Interactive Dialogue with the Independent Expert on Mali

Australian Statement

24 March 2015

Australia welcomes the recent progress made towards peace and reconciliation in Mali, and calls on all Malian parties to sign the 1 March 2015 peace agreement initialled in Algiers and abide by the cessation of hostilities.

The peace negotiations are a step forward but, as the Independent Expert reports, achieving lasting peace and reconciliation will require an end to impunity for human rights abuses committed by all parties. We note with concern the ongoing attacks on civilians, including acts of sexual violence against women and the recruitment and use of children by armed groups.

We would welcome the Independent Expert’s views on how to ensure the rights of victims are protected in the ongoing political process.

We also note the Independent Expert’s concern about the difficulties encountered in collecting information on sexual violence, and would welcome his advice on how to address this. We would also be grateful for views on how to encourage the participation of women in the process of national reconciliation.

We support the extension of the Independent Expert’s mandate for another 12 months, and call on the Malian Government to continue providing support for his work and endorsing his recommendations.