Why "YES" to forming an international investigation committee in Yemen?
Saturday, October 3, 2015
An international investigation committee has to be formed and tasked with probing into human rights violations. This committee should look into human rights violations committed by all parties without exception, given that forming a local committee will waste opportunities of doing victims justice. Forming a local committee to investigate into human rights violations in Yemen is a belated step that has currently been tampered with by Hadi's administration and Saleh's administration before.
Two decision drafts were brought up at the 30th conference on Human Rights held in late September,2015. The first draft was drawn up and presented by the Netherlands which was in favor of forming an international committee to investigate human rights violations in Yemen perpetrated by all parties. This draft was supported by many respectable international organizations. The second draft brought up at the conference was by the Arab Group. This draft suggested forming a local investigation committee. This suggestion aims to waste chances of doing victims justice since it serves the interest of the parties involved in these violations.
Here is a background of the irresponsible local dealing with investigation.
On Sept. 29, 2015, the United Nations Human Rights Council laid down a decree no. 18/19 of 2011. One article of this decree states that the Yemeni government has to form an independent investigation committee that meets the international standards in order to carry out independent and transparent investigations into the credible allegations of human rights violations in Yemen. In November 15, 2011, the Yemeni government under the leadership of the then premier Mojawar agreed in principle to make up a committee in response to the decree issued by Human Rights Council.
On September 22, 2012, the Yemeni government issued a republican decree no. 140 of 2012 which stated that an investigation committee had to be formed and tasked with probing into human rights violations of 2011 as a decorative procedure, but, without announcing the names of the committee's members. In addition, the committee didn't have clear implementation strategies which could have proven the seriousness of the authority back then. On Monday, September 7, 2015, Hadi issued a decree no. 13 of 2015 which stated that a committee tasked with investigations into human rights violations since 2011 had to be formed. This decree stated clearly the names of the committee's members and the second article of the decree dictated that the committee would come into force starting from the date of issuance of the decree.
Hadi and his administration have wasted a valuable opportunity concerning the victims of human rights violations and passed the buck to a one-sided local party involved in conflict at a time the authority on the ground was supposed to give thumbs up to this decision. This move has been regarded as a clear indication that Hadi is intent on following in the footsteps of his predecessor, Ali Saleh, and his administration. When he, Hadi, was displaced, he decided to issue the decree as a decorative procedure few days before a session about Yemen was held in Human Rights Council.
Abdulrabu Mansor Hadi has become involved in human rights violations due to the fact that he is a staunch ally of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia (the KSA) that has been embroiled in human rights violations. Therefore, the committee he is going to form won't be able to investigate with independence, professionalism and efficiency into all violations without discriminations and selectivity.
Yemen and victims of human rights violations are in dire need for an unbiased and independent international investigation committee that doesn't take sides. This committee must not be formed by either of the warring parties so as not to waste the opportunity of doing victims justice and should be tasked with keeping a record of violations and presenting them to the concerned international organizations.