The UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances (WGEID) is visiting Pakistan (10 -20 September 2012)

10 September 2012– The United Nations Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances* is undertaking its first visit to Pakistan from 10 to 20 September 2012, at the invitationof the Government. 

During the mission, the UN experts will gather information on cases of enforced disappearances pending before the Working Group. They will also study the measures adopted by the State to prevent and eradicate enforced disappearances, including issues related to truth, justice and reparation for the victims of enforced disappearances.
The Working Group will visit various parts of the country and meet with State officials, both at the federal and provincial levels, as well as with representatives of civil society organizations, relatives of disappeared persons and representatives of relevant UN agencies.

The Working Group will be represented by Mr. Olivier de Frouville, the Chair-Rapporteur, and by Mr. Osman El-Hajjé,member. The independent experts will be accompanied by members of the Secretariat of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. 

The Working Group will hold a press conference at the end of the visit, on 20 September 2012, at 15.00 hours at the Marriott Hotel, in Islamabad.

A final report on the mission will be presented to the UN Human Rights Council in 2013.

(*) During the mission, the Working Group will be represented by Mr. Olivier de Frouville and Mr. Osman El-Hajjé. Mr. Olivier de Frouville, of France, is the Chair-Rapporteur of the Working Group. He was appointed by the Human Rights Council in 2008.  

Mr. de Frouville is Professor of Public Law at the University of Montpellier, where he teaches public international law, international human rights law, international criminal law and international economic law.

Mr. Osman EL HAJJÉ, of Lebanon, was appointed by the Human Rights Council in 2009. He is Professor and Chair of the Centre for Human Rights at Jinan University, in Tripoli, Lebanon. He was advisor to the Permanent Mission of Lebanon to the United Nations in Geneva and advisor on legal and social affairs to the Permanent Delegation of the League of Arab States in Geneva. 

Mr. Ugo Cedrangolo, Secretary of the Working Group, and Ms. Alia El-Khatib from the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights are also accompanying the mission.

The Working Group was established bythe UN Commission on Human Rights in 1980 to assist families in determiningthe fate and whereabouts of disappeared relatives. It endeavours to establish a channel of communication between the families and the Governments concerned, to ensure that individual cases are investigated, with the objective of clarifying the whereabouts of persons who, having disappeared, are placed outside the protection of the law. In view of the Working Group's humanitarian mandate, clarification occurs when the fate or whereabouts of the disappeared person are clearly established. The Working Group continues to address cases of disappearances until they are resolved. It also provides assistance in the implementation by States of the United Nations Declaration on the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance. 

For more information on the Working Group, log on to:

For more information and media requests during the mission: 

Ugo Cedrangolo ( +41 22 917 9286  / or Alia El-Khatib ( +41 22 9179134 /   

Ishrat Rizvi: Cell : (+92 300 8553790

Ishrat Rizvi    
National Information Officer
United Nations Information Centre 
Office: (92 51) 8355720
Cell   : (92 300) 8553790

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