In a letter released ahead of the UN Human Rights Council’s 49th session (28 February-1 April 2022), a record number of 81 NGOs urge states to extend the mandate of the UN Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan (CHRSS).
The signatories emphasise that the CHRSS is the only mechanism tasked with collecting and preserving evidence of violations of international humanitarian and human rights law in South Sudan. Its work remains vital as the country prepares for elections in 2023, violence remains pervasive, and South Sudanese civil society faces intensifying repression.
They highlight ongoing human rights issues and delays in implementing the 2018 Peace Agreement, including operationalisation of three transitional justice mechanisms, namely the Commission for Truth, Reconciliation and Healing (CTRH), the Compensation and Reparation Authority (CRA), and the Hybrid Court for South Sudan.
“This is not the time to change the Council’s approach, or to relax its scrutiny,” the signatories write. “The mandate of the CHRSS remains critical and should continue until such a point as demonstrable progress has been made against human rights benchmarks and accountability, and based on an assessment of risk factors of further violations.”