UN Authority Figures

UN Human Rights Council President: Gabon

Photo: Baudelaire Ndong Ella of Gabon, UN Human Rights Council President

Ritual killings, primarily of children, in which limbs, genitals, or other organs are amputated, are common in Gabon and often go unpunished. (US State Department's Country Report on Human Rights Practices, 2013)

Mission of the Human Rights Council:
"The General Assembly...2. Decides that the Council shall be responsible for promoting universal respect for the protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind and in a fair and equal manner; 3. Decides also that the Council should address situations of violations of human rights, including gross and systematic violations, and make recommendations thereon..." (Resolution 60/251)

Gabon's Term of office: 2013-2015; President: 2014

Gabon's Record on human rights:
"Security force personnel committed human rights abuses. The most important human rights problems in the country were harsh prison conditions, lengthy pretrial detention, and ritual killings. Other major human rights problems included: use of excessive force by police; an inefficient judiciary subject to government influence; restrictions on privacy and the press; harassment and extortion of African immigrants and refugees; widespread government corruption...Authorities seldom prosecuted rape cases. The law does not address spousal rape...[R]ape... was believed to be a frequent occurrence. Discussing rape remained taboo, and women often opted not to report rape due to fear of reprisal or shame....Domestic violence... was believed to be common... Police rarely intervened in such incidents. ...[T]he law...requires a married woman to obtain her husband's permission to receive a passport and to travel abroad... FGM/C [Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting] was believed to occur among the resident population of noncitizen Africans. Ritual killings, primarily of children, in which limbs, genitals, or other organs were amputated, occurred and often went unpunished. The practice was driven by the belief that certain body parts enhanced certain strengths..." (US State Department's Country Report on Human Rights Practices 2013, Gabon)