STOP HUMAN RIGHTS VIOLATIONS AND DENY REPUBLIQUE OF BENIN A SEAT ON THE HUMAN RIGHT COUNCIL FOR THE 2022-2024 SESSION
On Friday, September 24, 2021 during the 76th Ordinary Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York in her speech, Mrs. Mariam CHABI TALATA the Vice President of Benin representing her country at the general debate indicated Benin’s intention to sit on the United Nations Human Rights Council for the 2022-2024 session; invited the member countries of the United Nations to support Benin’s candidacy while recalling that the country’s candidacy had already been formally endorsed by the African Union.
Mrs. Mariam CHABI TALATA, in her plea claims that “The progress made by our country is sensitive, palpable, concrete in recent years and pushes us to consider that we deserve to sit on the United Nations Human Rights Council for the period 2022-2024 with a view to sharing our experiences in the protection and promotion of human rights. This forum is therefore a solemn opportunity for me to recall that our country’s candidacy has already been formally endorsed by the African Union. With this local support, we also invite all Member Countries of the United Nations to support Benin’s candidacy in the elections to be held in New York in October 2021.”
This statement by the representative of Benin on the podium of this august United Nations assembly is out of all measure with the reality of human rights in Benin. The statement of Mariam CHABI TALATA (On behalf of President Patrice Talon of Benin) is an affront to the entire Beninese people who suffer daily the abuses of a repressive and dictatorial power. It is an insult to the memory of the hundreds of Beninese who died under the bullets of the police in 2019 and 2021 in Cadjehoun, Bantè, Savè, Tchaorou, Parakou, Kandi and other localities of Benin on the orders of the regime in place in Cotonou; it is the negation of the basic human rights of the hundreds of political and opinion prisoners who languish in Benin’s prisons and the thousands of Beninese exiles and political refugees who live in precarious conditions far from home in the countries of the African sub-region, in Europe and in North America because of their political opinions.
Given that the human rights violations and abuses perpetrated since 2016 by the Government of Patrice Talon in Benin constitute crimes against humanity, all institutions, organizations, and people in love with freedom and respect for human rights should rebel against Benin’s candidacy for the United Nations Human Rights Council for the period 2021-2024. The request for support from the Vice-President of Benin, as bold as it is, is a poor attempt by the Cotonou regime to conceal its repressive character and whitewash the many crimes against humanity that have been perpetrated against the Beninese people and that cannot go unpunished.
Annexed to this document is a compilation of the evidence of the numerous abuses and abuses of human rights underway in Benin since the accession to power of President Patrice Talon in April 2016. Period during which the country went from free to partially free on the global scale of Freedomhouse’s indicators, and which the U.S. State Department’s 2020 Human Rights Report states that “important human rights issues included: unlawful or arbitrary executions, including extrajudicial executions; harsh and deadly prison conditions; severe restrictions on press freedom and unjustified arrests and prosecutions of journalists; lack of investigation and accountability for violence against women.”
We therefore invited all human rights advocates around the world to prevent Benin from being admitted sitting on the United Nations Human Rights Council for the 2022-2024 session by petitioning for an outright rejection of this candidacy by:
By signing the petition:
Or by contacting:
OFFICE OF THE UNITED NATIONS HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS United Nations Office at Geneva CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland Fax: (41 22) 917 90 11 Email:
DEPARTMENT OF STATE
THE BUREAU OF DEMOCRACY, HUMAN RIGHTS, AND LABOR
2201 C St NW, Washington, DC 20520