Universal Periodic Review

Universal Periodic Review

August 8, 2011
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18 months after Equatorial Guinea agreed to implement more than 100 recommendations at its first Universal Periodic Review, what is the status of these reforms?

In early 2010, the government of Equatorial Guinea accepted more than 100 recommendations made by United Nation (UN) member countries at the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR). The accepted recommendations were aimed at improving several key areas related to the protection and promotion of human rights and civil liberties.

It is unclear how or if the government of Equatorial Guinea is implementing the UPR recommendations; to date it has not provided the UN Human Rights Council with any updates to this effect. A number of alleged human rights and civil liberties violations carried out against Equatoguinean citizens over the past several months, however, stand at odds with the UPR recommendations that the government pledged to implement.

Most recently, for instance, the opposition political party Convergencia para la Democracia Social asserted that government authorities illegally detained, for politically motivated reasons, at least 8 citizens on August 1, 2011. Amnesty International accused the Equatoguinean government of a “draconian crackdown on freedom of expression” in the build up to the African Union Summit that took place in Malabo June 23-July 1, 2011. Human Rights Watch and EG Justice also documented a number of abuses ahead of the Summit. 

Equatorial Guinea’s next UPR is scheduled for 2014. As the country approaches the midway point between its first and second UPRs, it should demonstrate in a transparent manner the specific concrete and verifiable measures it is undertaking to implement the UPR recommendations to which it has publicly committed. 

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