“One of the most striking elements of this report lies in the complete impunity which continues to prevail in Libya and the systemic failures of the justice system,” Mr. Zeid said, underscoring the lack of means and capacity in the justice system to conduct prompt, independent and credible investigations or to prosecute those responsible for violations or abuses.
Since 2014, judges and prosecutors have been subject to killings, court bombings, assaults and abductions, he noted. As a result, courts in Derna, Sirte and Benghazi ceased activities in 2014, with limited re-activation of courts in parts of Benghazi in 2015, and victims have had little recourse to seek protection or to an effective remedy. “This impunity is facilitating further abuses,” he said.
“In the absence of proper protection, the judiciary cannot deliver justice,” says the report, which notes that the system for providing security is “inadequate and flawed,” as thousands of members of armed groups have been integrated into the Judicial Police with limited vetting.
The report recommends urgent action to stop the proliferation of armed groups through disarmament, demobilization and reintegration, and a vetting programme to remove and prevent the recruitment of individuals responsible for human rights violations or abuses.
The report further calls upon the international community to ensure that the International Criminal Court (ICC), which has jurisdiction in Libya, has the necessary resources to carry out its investigations and prosecutions.
Suggesting priority actions, it calls for addressing the security threats to administration of justice, reforming the Judicial Police, creating a robust victim and witness protection programme, establishing a specialized judicial structure within the Libyan courts to focus on crimes under international law, and organizing a high-level meeting to bring together Libyans actors and international partners to discuss initiatives to increase accountability in Libya.
(Source: United Nations News Centre)