Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Geneva, Switzerland
Address: Chemin des Fins 2, Case Postale 102, 1211 Geneva 19 - Telephone: 022 799 9100 - Fax: 022 799 9178

Human Rights Council - 18th Regular Session

Interactive dialogue with the International Commission of Inquiry to investigate all alleged violations of international human rights law in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

19 September 2011

The Australian Government thanks the International Commission of Inquiry for its oral update to the Council on its investigation into all alleged violations of international human rights law in Libya. The Australian Government continues to strongly support the Commission’s recommendation in its June report that the Human Rights Council remain seized of the human rights situation in Libya.

The international community has spoken with one voice in condemning the Qaddafi regime’s violent suppression of the Libyan population.

The Australian Government is monitoring the human rights situation in Libya closely as the National Transitional Council (NTC) continues to work to establish security in Tripoli. Australia is deeply concerned by Amnesty International’s report of 13 September alleging unlawful abductions, killings and torture by anti-Qaddafi forces during the uprising.

The Australian Government deplores human rights violations in all forms. Human rights violations and abuses are unacceptable and perpetrators must be held accountable, whatever their political persuasion.

To this end, Australia has welcomed recent statements by members of the NTC committing to a new Libya that respects democracy, equality, justice and the rule of law. Australia, together with other conference participants at the 1 September meeting of the International Conference for the Support of New Libya in Paris, commended NTC Chairman, Dr Mustafa Jalil for his calls that those responsible for serious human rights crimes committed during the conflict face justice under the rule of law.

In addition, Australia welcomed Dr Jalil’s statement on 22 August that opposition forces were not to take the law into their own hands and that the NTC would treat all prisoners humanely and expressed his strong objection to execution outside the law.

Australia will continue to impress upon the NTC the importance of respecting human rights, avoiding reprisals, and making sure all parts of Libya can share in the country's future. Australia encourages the NTC to take immediate steps to reduce the risk of greater political and social instability and to promote respect for the rule of law.

The international community must continue to do all it can to support the will of the Libyan people, which is for an effective transition to a free, democratic and inclusive Libya.

Again, we thank the Commission for its investigation into allegations of human rights violations and abuses in Libya under extreme circumstances of hardship and insecurity.