The Daily Press Briefing

Statements made by
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
and International Development

Paris - October 5, 2016
In this issue:

◢  Afghanistan – André Vallini attending ministerial donors' conference (Brussels - October 5, 2016)

◢  Haiti – Hurricane Matthews (October 5, 2016)

◢  Belarus – Death penalty

◢  United Nations / Human Rights Council – Closing of the 33rd session

Afghanistan – André Vallini attending ministerial donors' conference (Brussels - October 5, 2016)

Minister of State for Development and Francophonie André Vallini is representing France at the Brussels Conference on Afghanistan.

The aim of this conference is to review the reforms carried out by Afghan authorities to strengthen the country's stability and improve its governance, and to bolster the international community's commitment to the country’s reconstruction and development.

A longtime partner of the Afghan authorities, France will contribute €100 million to this effort over the next five years, targeting two priority sectors in particular: education and health.

Haiti – Hurricane Matthews (October 5, 2016)

France is closely following Hurricane Matthew, which hit the southwestern point of Haiti yesterday morning. The interministerial staff of the Antilles Zone and the Crisis and Support Center of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development have been mobilized.

This hurricane has hit the Haitian people hard and caused major damage, particularly in the Sud and Grande Anse departments, with which communications are down.

As soon as the hurricane was announced, the Haitian authorities triggered an emergency plan, took preventive measures, and established an assessment and review committee, with which our embassy in Port-au-Prince is in contact.

France offers its heartfelt solidarity to the Haitian people and government at this difficult time.

Belarus – Death penalty

France is concerned by the rejection, by the Supreme Court of Belarus, of Sergey Ostrikov's appeal. Mr. Ostrikov was sentenced to death on May 19.

Ahead of World Day Against the Death Penalty on October 10, France calls on the Belarusian authorities to institute a moratorium on the death penalty as a first step toward its abolition, and reiterates its opposition to the death penalty throughout the world and in all cases.

United Nations / Human Rights Council – Closing of the 33rd session

France welcomes the results of the 33rd session of the Human Rights Council which took place in Geneva from September 13 to 30. Progress was notably made in the following areas:

  • renewal of the mandates of the independent experts in the Central African Republic, Sudan and Somalia;
  • establishment of an international commission of inquiry on the human rights situation in Burundi;
  • decision by the Council to continue to focus on the situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo, which it will address at each session in 2017;
  • adoption of a new resolution on the human rights situation in Syria, providing for the establishment of a high-level panel focusing on the victims of arbitrary detention and enforced disappearances;
  • adoption of a new mechanism to monitor the human rights situation in Yemen, which should enable the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to work independently;
  • renewal of the mandate of the working group on arbitrary detention, supported by France;
  • adoption of resolutions on the safety of journalists, the national institutions responsible for the protection of human rights as well as on terrorism and human rights;
  • the first appointment of a UN independent expert on discrimination and violence based on sexual orientation or gender identity (Vitit Muntarbhorn). France, together with its EU partners, supported the creation of such a mandate at the 32nd session of the Human Rights Council;
  • renewal of the mandates of the special rapporteurs on contemporary forms of slavery, on the right to health as well as on the right to drinking water and sanitation.

France in the
United States
Embassy of France in Washington, D.C.
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