The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) has today welcomed the UN Secretary General’s report to the 33rd Session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva on reprisals against human rights defenders which denounced the harassment of the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ), an IFJ affiliate, and urged the Somali government to cease its attacks immediately. The UN Secretary General’s report documents recent developments that have taken place within the United Nations system and beyond in relation to the issue of reprisals against human rights defenders. The report contains information gathered between 1 June 2015 and 31 May 2016 on alleged cases of intimidation and reprisal against those seeking to cooperate, cooperating or having cooperated with the United Nations, its representatives and mechanisms in the field of human rights. Somalia appears for the first time in this report. Presented to the UN Human Rights Council, the report points in particular at Somalia’s government attacks against Secretary General of the NUSOJ, Omar Faruk Osman for his cooperation with the International Labor Organisation (ILO) . Commenting on behalf of NUSOJ, Abdirisak Omar Ismail, President of the Supreme Council of NUSOJ said “The cases documented in this new report, including Somalia case, are truly disturbing. This report exposes the horrific human cost of cooperating with the UN and its human rights system. We welcome the increased attention devoted to reprisals suffered by our union and its Secretary General Omar Faruk Osman.” IFJ calls on the Somali government to take due account of the UN report's findings and take all necessary steps to prevent attacks, intimidations and harassment against human rights defenders.
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