UNITED NATIONS HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL - 45TH SESSION

Statement by the Kingdom of the Netherlands

Enhanced Interactive Dialogue with the Independent Expert on Somalia - Item 10

Madam President,

The Kingdom of the Netherlands aligns itself with the EU statement. We thank the Independent Expert Ms Dyfan for her report and reaffirm our full support to her mandate.

The Netherlands applauds the efforts of the Federal Government of Somalia in reporting to the HRC on the implementation of the Convention of the Rights of the Child and in holding nationwide consultations for the submission of its reports to the Human Rights Committee and the third cycle of the universal periodic review.

We remain concerned, however, about the wide spread occurrence of sexual and gender-based violence. We are particularly worried about the new Sexual Intercourse Related Crimes Bill as it allows child marriage and forced marriage. We urge Somalia to prevent any violations to women’s rights and children rights.

The Netherlands is also concerned about the new Media Law that further curtails press freedom. The Netherlands urges Somali authorities to improve the safety and security of journalists and create an enabling environment for the media, political opposition and civil society.

Thank you.