Private military and security companies need tighter oversightListen /
There's a need for a "robust and binding" international agreement regarding the regulation of private military and security companies, a group of UN independent experts announced on Monday.
The UN Working Group on the use of mercenaries was presenting its annual report to the General Assembly.
Anton Katz, Chair of the five-member expert group, stressed that existing national legislation is not sufficient to address the challenges posed by these companies.
"The working group is supportive of the UN Human Rights Council open-ended inter-governmental working group to consider the possibility of elaborating an international regulatory framework on the regulation, monitoring and oversight of the activities of private military and security companies. It has had two sessions. We would support the nature and the role of that inter-governmental working group. In saying that, our working group does not lose sight of the fact that the other initiatives such as the Montreux Process, the International Code of Conduct and other initiatives or mechanisms regulating the kinds of activities that private military and security companies are involved in, and at a growing and increasingly growing rate, should not be ignored, but this international convention should be a complement to the gaps that exists." (1’03″)
Katz also briefed the Assembly on the activities of the Working Group, including country visits to Somalia and Honduras.
The Working Group has also launched a project that will analyze good practices and possible shortcomings in protecting human rights in transnational security-related activities.
Jocelyne Sambira, United Nations.