UN agency visits Bahamas to verify “worrying” claims of abuse

UN agency visits Bahamas to verify “worrying” claims of abuse
UN Human Rights Office Deputy Spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani.

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — A United Nations representative is expected to meet with Bahamian authorities today over claims of “violence and abuse” among certain law enforcement agencies in the aftermath of Hurricane Dorian.

The meeting follows the visit of UN Senior Human Rights Advisor George Abu Al Zulof on November 10-15, according to UN Human Rights Office Deputy Spokesperson Ravina Shamdasani.

The government invited the United Nations Human Rights Office to visit The Bahamas to discuss human rights matter related to deportation, repatriations and other related issues on October 30.

“The purpose of this mission to Abaco was to assess the current human rights situation in all affected areas with a special focus on free and equal access to humanitarian assistance, including access to health and education; to assess the impact of immigration operations including detention and deportations in Abaco on the ability of humanitarian agencies to provide impartial assistance to affected population; and to verify worrying data we received from different sources about violence and abuse used by immigration officers and defense forces,” Shamdasani said in a statement.

The advisor’s trip included visits to shelters, hurricane-affected areas in Abaco, and interviews with scores of storm victims and residents of shantytown areas, such as the Farm, where the UN body said hundreds of people continue to reside.

Shamdasani said the UN body is prepared to provide technical assistance to the government with the aim of “improving the human rights situation”.

“We are fully aware of the challenges caused by Hurricane Dorian and welcome the reconstruction efforts by the Bahamian authorities,” she said.

“As we mentioned in our press briefing on 18 October 2019, in the aftermath of natural disasters it is particularly important to ensure that no one is left behind and that the opportunity to rebuild together is placed at the forefront.

Shamdasani continued: “In this vein, particular attention must be paid to the most vulnerable, marginalized communities to ensure they do not suffer from discrimination in accessing their fundamental rights to food, water, shelter and other basic needs and that the state ensures the human rights of all individuals affected. 

“We stand ready to provide technical assistance to the government in this regard.”

3 comments

The UN don’t come up in our country trying to tell us what to do. Your country don’t have this problem , why do you want us to have another country take of our island . The Haitian people have there country why not stay there and help fix the problem . We have enough of them here , more then any other country in the world. We have done more then anyone to help the Haitians but enough is enough . It looks like they are trying to combine Haiti with the Bahamas , it’s not happening. The UN needs to go to Haiti and sit down with the Haitian government and help them come up with solutions on how to make the Haitians stay in Haiti. Our island could only take so much . And for the undocumented Haitians you need to go back to your country . Law is Law go home .

Why is government making all the agency that want to help the Bahamas and Abaco islands leave. They are harassing and threatening them. How are we as people wanting to help supposed to go over without fear of being attacked or threatened when we are all there to help these people rebuild what they have left.

Illegals has no rights to nothing in the Bahamas , no school , no house, no medical no nothing . Why are the UN making a big deal out of this , they have to go back it’s as simple as that .can I go to another country and take someone property , no I cannot .laws are in every country and we have to abide by the law .

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