Necessity Still Breeds Ingenuity - Archive of SQUALL MAGAZINE 1992-2006

UN Commission on Human Rights Resolution 1993

(adopted unanimously on 10 March 1993 in Geneva during the 49th Session of the UN Commission on Human Rights)

Forced Evictions

Squall 5, Oct/Nov 1993, pg. 35.

Recalling resolution 1991/12 (Forced Evictions) of 26 Aug 1991 of the Sub Commission on Prevention of Discrimination and Protection of Minorities.

Also recalling its resolution, in which it took note with particular interest of the right to adequate housing adopted by the committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights at its sixth session and the reaffirmed importance attached in this framework to respect for human dignity and the principle of non-discrimination. Reaffirming that every woman, man and child has the right to a secure place to live in peace and dignity.

Concerned that, according to United Nations statistics, in excess of one billion persons throughout the world are homeless or inadequately housed, and that this number is growing.

Recognizing that the practice of forced evictions involves the involuntary removal of persons, families and groups from their homes and communities, resulting in increased levels of homelessness and inadequate housing and living conditions.

Disturbed that forced evictions and homelessness intensify social conflict and inequality and invariably affect the poorest, most socially, economically, environmentally and politically disadvantaged and vulnerable sectors of society.

Aware that forced evictions can be carried out, sanctioned, demanded, proposed, initiated or tolerated by a range of actors.

Emphasising that ultimate legal responsibility for preventing forced evictions rests with governments.

Recalling that international agencies should scrupulously avoid involvement in projects which, involve large scale-evictions or displacement of persons without the provision of all appropriate protection and compensation,

Noting with appreciation that the committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights considered that instances of forced evictions were incompatible with the requirements of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and could only be justified in the most exceptional circumstances, and in accordance with the relevant principles of international law, Taking note of the inclusion of forced evictions as one of the primary causes of the international housing crisis in the work of Mr Rajindar Sachar,

1 AFFIRMS that the practice of forced evictions constitutes a gross violation of human rights, in particular the right to adequate housing;

2 URGES Governments to undertake immediate measures, at all levels, aimed at eliminating the practice of forced evictions;

3 ALSO URGES Governments to confer legal security of tenure to all persons currently threatened with forced eviction and to adopt all necessary measures giving full protection against forced evictions, based upon effective participation, consultation and negotiation with affected persons or groups;

4 RECOMMENDS that all Governments provide immediate restitution, compensation and/or appropriate and sufficient alternative accommodation or land, consistent with their wishes or needs, to persons and communities which have been forcibly evicted, following mutually satisfactory negotiations with the affected persons or groups.