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Navi Pillay
Navanethem (Navi) Pillay was the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights from September 2008 to September 2014.

Entries by Navi Pillay

AU Report Into Sexual Violence in South Sudan: Vital to Stop Women's Bodies Being Used in War

(0) Comments | Posted January 22, 2015 | 8:52 AM

As the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, I visited South Sudan in May 2012, less than a year after its people voted for a better future as an independent nation state. There were human rights issues to address but also a great optimism. I returned in April 2014,...

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国際女性デーに寄せて ジェンダーに対する固定観念が女性の機会を奪う

(0) Comments | Posted March 7, 2014 | 10:14 PM


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Time to Change Our Response to HIV

(47) Comments | Posted July 19, 2012 | 12:10 PM

The world's collective response to HIV three decades ago can be summed up in one word: shameful. At worst, people living with HIV were, inexplicably, chained to their beds, detained, turned away from medical facilities, criminalised and deported. At best, they lost their jobs, were kicked out of schools and...

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The Tunis Imperative: Human Rights and Development In the Wake of the Arab Spring

(3) Comments | Posted December 10, 2011 | 1:13 PM

There are moments in history when each of us is called upon to declare where we stand. I believe this is one of those moments.

Over the past year, in Tunis, Cairo, Madrid, New York and hundreds of other cities and towns across the globe, the voice of ordinary...

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Let's Fight Racism!

(0) Comments | Posted September 22, 2011 | 12:05 PM

In Jackson, Mississippi last June, a group of white teenagers targets a 49-year old black man. First, they savagely beat him. Then they run over their victim with a pick-up truck and kill him. The reason for such brutality? According to the prosecutors involved in the case, the teenagers had...

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Equality Not Yet Won for African Descendants

(0) Comments | Posted March 22, 2011 | 11:10 AM

I have recently visited Goree Island in Senegal, the infamous "door of no return" from which countless Africans were sent in chains to the Americas during the transatlantic slave trade.

As I moved around the island where thousands of human beings were traded as commodities, I was particularly appreciative...

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Women Are Pushing for Justice; They Must Not Be Pushed Back

(1) Comments | Posted March 14, 2011 | 10:07 AM

Last week on March 8, the world celebrated International Women's Day for the 100th year.

It is an occasion to salute the women of the Middle East and North Africa, along with women all over the world who are taking great risks to stand up and fight for dignity, justice...

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Remembering the Victims of the Holocaust

(0) Comments | Posted January 31, 2011 | 11:25 AM

The horrors of the Holocaust, perpetrated with such systemic cruelty on such a large population over so many years, remain as painful to fathom today as ever.

Last Thursday was a day of remembrance for those millions of Jewish men, women and children, as well as thousands of other...

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The Tunisia We Are Hoping For

(4) Comments | Posted January 21, 2011 | 4:31 PM

We have all been watching anxiously as the historic events triggered by the courageous people of Tunisia have been unfolding, with astonishing speed, over the past few weeks. It is essential that we, the international community, give our full support to their call for freedom and for the full respect...

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Are We Accomplices to Violence Against Women?

(0) Comments | Posted November 26, 2010 | 8:46 AM

Although precise statistics are not available, since violence against women -- especially domestic violence -- is a hidden crime, recent figures released by the United Nations suggest that in some countries close to 60 percent of women may be subjected to physical violence at least once in their lifetime. They...

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Millennium Development Goals: Time Is Running Out

(7) Comments | Posted August 13, 2010 | 5:55 PM

Dayaram expected to hold his baby in his arms. Instead, he was left to mourn his wife and unborn child. They died of complications during labor because Dayaram's wife, Bushba, had to walk fifty kilometers from her remote village in northern India to the nearest hospital. Bushba's fate is not...

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Malawi sets grave example with conviction of gay couple

(14) Comments | Posted May 21, 2010 | 12:51 PM

In January this year, I wrote about an outrageous draft bill before the Ugandan Parliament that would have sanctioned blatant discrimination against gay people.

In the same post, I mentioned a Malawian gay couple that was being prosecuted after getting engaged to marry.

I hoped then that justice...

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Stop the Killing of Migrants on the Egypt-Israel Border

(40) Comments | Posted March 2, 2010 | 1:25 PM

Since July 2007, some 60 fatal shootings of unarmed migrants have occurred on the Egypt-Israel border.

While migrants often lose their lives accidentally when traveling in over-crowded boats, or trying to cross remote land borders, I know of no other country where so many unarmed migrants and asylum seekers...

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Uganda Must Shelve Draconian Law on Homosexuality

(26) Comments | Posted January 22, 2010 | 10:45 AM

The Ugandan Parliament has before it a draft bill on homosexuality. If passed, this bill will bring the country into a direct collision with established international human rights standards aimed at preventing discrimination.

I welcome the recent statements by the President and other senior members of the Government suggesting...

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Stop Treating Migrants as Second-class Human Beings

(2) Comments | Posted December 22, 2009 | 2:15 PM

In recent years, migrants - including individuals who were possibly refugees - have reportedly been shot dead by security forces, or dumped to die in the desert in their attempts to cross borders in North Africa. Hundreds more are believed to have died after being pushed back out into the...

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Abolition of the Death Penalty

(2) Comments | Posted December 16, 2009 | 2:41 PM

This month we mark the 20th anniversary of the adoption of a key treaty that aims to bring about the abolition of the death penalty. The treaty - known as the Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights - provides States with the means of...

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The Fight Against Discrimination

(3) Comments | Posted December 9, 2009 | 11:18 AM

Old and new forms of discrimination and intolerance continue to divide communities all over the world. Sentiments of xenophobia are on the rise. They are often manipulated for demagogic purposes or even for sinister political agendas. Day after day, their corrosive effects undermine the rights of countless victims. This is...

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Brazil's indigenous and Afro-Brazilian populations face serious discrimination

(3) Comments | Posted November 18, 2009 | 11:03 AM

Last week I made my first visit to Brazil as United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. It was a very full and fascinating week during which I held a series of frank and open discussions with the President, ministers, the judiciary, and many other officials at both federal and...

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Turning a Blind Eye to Killing and Rape in DR Congo

(0) Comments | Posted November 10, 2009 | 9:19 AM

On November 11, the United Nations Security Council will discuss the pressing, but still elusive issue of protection of civilians in armed conflict. Accountability for crimes committed in the course of hostilities should be at the forefront of that debate. History shows that there can neither be durable peace nor...

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Tearing Down the Wall of Caste

(3) Comments | Posted October 14, 2009 | 9:24 PM

A group of representatives from caste-affected communities in Asia recently gave me a piece of brick from the wall of a torn down latrine. The brick symbolised the global struggle against the degrading practice of making members of a "lower caste" clean public toilets with their bare hands.


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