“During the session, the SCA asked the CNDH to provide information about the actions it has taken in relation to torture, enforced disappearances and the expulsion of migrants. While the SCA acknowledges that the CNDH did provide some information, the SCA was concerned that the actions described were limited and did not demonstrate that the CNDH was taking adequate steps to address these human rights violations. The SCA encourages the CNDH to undertake actions to address all human rights violations, including those noted above.
The SCA also considered a press release published on 6 March 2018 by Algérie Presse Service, according to which: “La présidente du Conseil national des droits de l’Homme (CNDH), Fafa Ben Zerrouki, a affirmé, mardi, que le dernier rapport d’Amnesty International sur la situation des droits de l’Homme dans le monde, s’était basé, dans le volet réservé à l’Algérie, sur “des déclarations fallacieuses”, dénuées de tout fondement”. [English translation: The Chairperson of the National Council for Human Rights, Fafa Ben Zerrouki, claimed that Amnesty International’s last report on the situation of human rights in the world is based on misleading and unfounded declarations when it comes to Algeria. http://www.aps.dz/algerie/70792-le-rapport-d-ai-sur-les-droits-de-l-homme-en-algerie-s-appuie-sur-des-declarations-fallacieuses].
The SCA acknowledges that the CNDH has indicated that the comments of the Chairperson, which were originally given in Arabic, were distorted when translated into French. However, the SCA has consulted the Arabic version3 as well, and notes that the substance of the quote is the same in both versions. The SCA is accordingly not satisfied with the response provided by the CNDH.
An NHRI’s mandate should be interpreted in a broad, liberal and purposive manner to promote a progressive definition of human rights which includes all rights set out in international, regional and
domestic instruments. NHRIs are expected to promote and ensure respect for all human rights, democratic principles and the strengthening of the rule of law in all circumstances, and without exception. Where serious violations of human rights are imminent, NHRIs are expected to conduct themselves with a heightened level of vigilance and independence.
In fulfilling its protection mandate, an NHRI must not only monitor, investigate and report on the human rights situation in the country, it should also undertake rigorous and systematic follow-up activities to promote and advocate for the implementation of its recommendations and findings, and the protection of those whose rights were found to be violated.”