UN urges NTC to respect right of detainees in Libya

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A UN human rights team set up to investigate rights violations in Libya on Tuesday called on the country's new rulers to respect the rights of all detainees after the death of despot Moamer Kadhafi.

"It is very important for the NTC and all the armed groups in Libya to assure that all the prisoners under their control, whoever they might be, are treated in accordance with international norms," said Philippe Kirsch, the head of the International Commission of Inquiry on Libya, set up in February.

"In particular, I call on all the armed forces to avoid any act of reprisal and arbitrary repression against both Libyans and foreigners," he said in a statement.

The commission called on the country's new rulers to open "independent, impartial and transparent investigations into all allegations of violations of detainees' rights."

"Building a new state on solid foundations respecting human rights will respond to the aspirations of the Libyan people who have fought for 42 years against injustice and oppression," he added.

"The time has come to pass from promises to acts, and that begins by respecting the rights of all detainees," he said.

"The commission is encouraged by the public announcements by the NTC that its leaders will open investigations into the recent deaths of certain detainees," the statement said in an apparent reference to an NTC announcement that it would investigate the circumstances of Kadhafi's death after he was captured outside of his hometown of Sirte last week.

The 47-member UN Human Rights Council set up the investigative team in February at the beginning of the conflict between Moamer Kadhafi's regime and rebels.

The commission issue its first report in June, another one in September and its final assessment is expected in March 2012.

© 2011 AFP

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