International-Lawyers.Org (INTLAWYERS) welcomed the report of the Human Rights Council’s Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation, Mr. Léo Heller. INTLAWYERS particularly expressed its appreciation for the Special Rapporteur’s report that highlighted the special vulnerability of women.
INTLAWYERS also requested the UN Working Group on Arbitrary Detention consider extending its decision in the case of Mr. Shawki Ahmed Omar, to include the United States’ violations of his human rights and U.S. government’s alleged encouragement to the Iraq authorities to continue to violate Shawki’s human rights. Shawki, a U.S.citizen, was detained without charge in Iraq by the United States military, tortured and arbitrarily detained by the U.S. until 2010 when he was turned over to the Iraq authorities, which totured him, subjected him to unfair trials, and continued to arbitrarily detain him. On 23 April 2014 the Working Group issued an Opinion finding Iraq in violation of its international obligations (Opinion 5-2014). Not only has Iraq failed to implement this Opinion, which calls for Shawki’s immediate release, but it has claimed that United States officials are encouraging Iraq to continue to violate Shawki’s human rights. INTLAWYERS calls on the Working Group to ensure respect for its decision by both Iraq and the United States.