9 September 2013
Distinguished Members of the Human Rights Council,
Excellencies and Colleagues,
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Thank you for this opportunity to address you.
I regret to report that the human rights situation in Bahrain remains an issue of serious concern: the deep polarization of society and the harsh clampdown on human rights defenders and peaceful protesters continue to make a durable solution more difficult to secure. I reiterate my call on Bahrain to fully comply with its international human rights commitments, including respect for the rights to freedoms of expression, peaceful assembly, and association. The cancellation of the scheduled visit of the Special Rapporteur on Torture is regrettable, and important recommendations made by the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry have still not been implemented. I also wish to express my disappointment that the cooperation with the Government of Bahrain, which started fruitfully with the deployment of an OHCHR team in December 2012, has not developed further and an OHCHR follow-up mission has been stalled since then.
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