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Source: Human Rights Council
12 March 2009



UNOG
THE UNITED NATIONS
OFFICE AT GENEVA


HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL HEARS PRESENTATION OF REPORTS ON INTERNALLY
DISPLACED PERSONS, TRAFFICKING IN PERSONS, AND PREVENTION OF GENOCIDE

Concludes Interactive Dialogue on Freedom of Religion or Belief and on Human Rights Defenders

Human Rights Council
AFTERNOON
12 March 2009

The Human Rights Council this afternoon heard presentations of reports from the Representative of the Secretary-General on internally displaced persons, the Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children, and the Special Adviser of the Secretary-General on the prevention of genocide. At the beginning of the meeting, the Council concluded its interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteurs on freedom of religion or belief and on human rights defenders.

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Continuation of Interactive Dialogue on Freedom of Religion or Belief and on Human Rights Defenders

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ALI BAHREYNI (Iran) ...

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With regard to the report of the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief on her mission to the Occupied Palestine, Iran expressed its deep concern over the variety of alarming issues which had been reflected in the report. These concerns included restricted access for Muslims and Christians to places of worship, violation of the religious rights of persons deprived of their liberty, and the Israeli regime's discriminatory laws and practices and its official incitement to hatred. Meanwhile the report had failed to address the reality on the ground and the main cause of the atrocities which were happening in Occupied Palestine. The Special Rapporteur had also failed to point toward the nature of the occupation and the occupying power was based on racial ideologies.

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ABD. AZIZ AZRIL (Malaysia) ...

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As a country with a multi-religious and multicultural character, Malaysia had long practiced tolerance and understanding in particular on sensitive issue of religion and belief. Malaysia also commended the Special Rapporteur for undertaking a visit to the Occupied Palestinian Territories. It fully shared her concern at the rising trend both in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Israel where children were being incited to express hatred towards adherents of other religions.

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ASMA JAHANGIR, Special Rapporteur on the freedom of religion or belief, ...

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On the comment made by Palestine regarding the case of the Al-Ibrahimi mosque in the 1990s, she stressed that her report was finalized in October 2008, and therefore it was not possible to include information on that case. Noting concerns that there was no mention of the recent events in Gaza in the report, Ms. Jahangir noted her mission to the area had taken place before the latest events, but highlighted that the Coordination Committee had issued a statement in January 2009 on the situation in Gaza, which was a departure from the usual practice of the Coordination Committee; however she strongly welcomed it.

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For use of the information media; not an official record

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