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United Nations

Universal Periodic Review of Gabon, Statement by Australia, 24 January 2023

Universal Periodic Review Working Group – 42nd Session

Universal Periodic Review of Gabon

Statement by Australia

24 January 2023

Thank you, [President/Vice President]

Australia commends Gabon for decriminalising same-sex relations between consenting adults since its last Universal Periodic Review. We also commend efforts to identify, investigate and prosecute officials convicted of human rights abuses or corruption.

Australia is concerned by reports of serious restrictions on the freedoms of movement and peaceful assembly. We are also concerned by reports of poor prison and detention conditions, and encourage Gabon to consider reducing the length of pre-trial detention. Noting Gabon’s proud history of international peacekeeping, allegations of sexual abuse or exploitation against members of the security forces must be investigated.

Australia recommends that Gabon:

  1. Introduce anti-discrimination legislation to address inequality and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
  2. Improve prison conditions, including by ensuring adequate sanitation, medical care and consistent access to potable water and nutritious food.
  3. Identify, investigate, and prosecute all perpetrators of human rights violations and abuses, including those within the security forces.

[157 words]

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