OHCHR / YEMEN THE BAHAMAS

12-Jun-2020 00:04:04
The spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Rupert Colville briefed journalist on the dire situation in Yemen, where the healthcare system is on the brink of collapse; and on a court ruling in The Bahamas hailed as “a positive step towards promoting gender equality and reducing the risk of statelessness.” OHCHR
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STORY: OHCHR / YEMEN BAHAMAS
TRT: 4:04
SOURCE: UNTV CH
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH /NATS

DATELINE: 12 JUNE 2020 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND
SHOTLIST
FILE

1. Exterior shot, UN Geneva

12 JUNE 2020 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Rupert Colville, Spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“We are alarmed at the desperate situation in Yemen, where the healthcare system is on the brink of collapse, and we are fearful that countless lives will be lost not only to COVID-19 but as a result of malaria, cholera, dengue fever and other diseases. We urge international donors to provide immediate relief to help the millions who have already endured five years of warfare in Yemen. We echo the concerns of the UN Secretary-General who said on the second of June that it is now a race against time for Yemen. Already, four out of every five people, 24 million people in all, need lifesaving aid in what remains the world’s largest humanitarian crisis.”

FILE

3. Exterior shot, UN Geneva

12 JUNE 2020 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

4. SOUNDBITE (English) Rupert Colville, Spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“More than 30 of the 41 UN-supported programs in Yemen will close in the coming weeks if additional funds are not secured. Now, more than ever, the country needs the outside world’s help, and it’s not really getting it. Our Office has received reports of hospitals turning away sick people, some of whom were struggling for breath and with a high fever. There are simply no beds, little equipment, few staff and next to no medicine available. Sanitation and clean water are also in short supply. The country has officially recorded more than 500 cases of COVID-19. However, official reports are lagging far behind actual infections, especially in areas controlled by the de facto authorities in the north. The overall case fatality rate is over 20 percent.”

FILE

5. Exterior shot, UN Geneva

12 JUNE 2020 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

6. SOUNDBITE (English) Rupert Colville, Spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“Many functioning health centres lack basic equipment to treat COVID-19. Health workers have no protective gear, and most are receiving no salaries, resulting in health workers not reporting to duty. We call on the parties to the conflict to agree on an immediate ceasefire, abide by their obligations under international law and take every possible measure to protect Yemenis and ensure their access to medical treatment and information to contain the spread of the current deadly outbreaks in Yemen. And we urge them to allow unhindered access and the delivery of much needed humanitarian assistance to civilians across country.”

FILE

7. Exterior shot, UN Geneva

12 JUNE 2020 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

8. SOUNDBITE (English) Rupert Colville, Spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“We welcome the recent court ruling in The Bahamas regarding the country’s citizenship laws which are a positive step towards promoting gender equality and reducing the risk of statelessness. Until now a child born in The Bahamas to a foreign mother and a Bahamian father out of wedlock was not granted citizenship and many children were effectively rendered effectively stateless as they could only apply for Bahamian nationality upon turning 18years old.”

FILE

9. Exterior shot, UN Geneva

12 JUNE 2020 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

10. SOUNDBITE (English) Rupert Colville, Spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“This ruling in May stipulates that “every person born in The Bahamas after July 9, 1973, shall become a citizen of The Bahamas at the date of his birth if at that date either of his parents is a citizen of The Bahamas, irrespective of the marital status of the parents at the time of birth.”

FILE

11. Exterior shot, UN Geneva

12 JUNE 2020 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

12. SOUNDBITE (English) Rupert Colville, Spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“This brings the legal framework of The Bahamas more into line with international standards on the right to nationality and equality and non-discrimination. We encourage the Government of the Bahamas to build on this ruling and take the necessary legislative, policy and procedural steps to eliminate discrimination on the basis of gender in their nationality laws, and that was a strong recommendation by the Committee on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women.”

FILE

13. Exterior shot, UN Geneva
STORYLINE
The spokesperson for the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Rupert Colville briefed journalist on the dire situation in Yemen, where the healthcare system is on the brink of collapse; and on a court ruling in The Bahamas hailed as “a positive step towards promoting gender equality and reducing the risk of statelessness.”

“We are alarmed at the desperate situation in Yemen, where the healthcare system is on the brink of collapse, and we are fearful that countless lives will be lost not only to COVID-19 but as a result of malaria, cholera, dengue fever and other diseases. We urge international donors to provide immediate relief to help the millions who have already endured five years of warfare in Yemen," said Colville.

“We echo the concerns of the UN Secretary-General who said on the second of June that it is now a race against time for Yemen. Already, four out of every five people, 24 million people in all, need lifesaving aid in what remains the world’s largest humanitarian crisis.”

“More than 30 of the 41 UN-supported programs in Yemen will close in the coming weeks if additional funds are not secured. Now, more than ever, the country needs the outside world’s help, and it’s not really getting it.”

“Our Office has received reports of hospitals turning away sick people, some of whom were struggling for breath and with a high fever. There are simply no beds, little equipment, few staff and next to no medicine available. Sanitation and clean water are also in short supply.”

“The country has officially recorded more than 500 cases of COVID-19. However, official reports are lagging far behind actual infections, especially in areas controlled by the de facto authorities in the north. The overall case fatality rate is over 20 percent.”

“Many functioning health centres lack basic equipment to treat COVID-19. Health workers have no protective gear, and most are receiving no salaries, resulting in health workers not reporting to duty.”

“We call on the parties to the conflict to agree on an immediate ceasefire, abide by their obligations under international law and take every possible measure to protect Yemenis and ensure their access to medical treatment and information to contain the spread of the current deadly outbreaks in Yemen. And we urge them to allow unhindered access and the delivery of much needed humanitarian assistance to civilians across country.”

On 25 May, the Supreme Court ruled that anyone born in The Bahamas was entitled to citizenship at birth if at least one of their parents was a citizen of the country, irrespective of whether the parents were married. The ruling came during consideration of the case of children reported to have been fathered by Bahamian men out of wedlock to Jamaican and Haitian women.

Colville said: “We welcome the recent court ruling in The Bahamas regarding the country’s citizenship laws which are a positive step towards promoting gender equality and reducing the risk of statelessness.”

“Until now a child born in The Bahamas to a foreign mother and a Bahamian father out of wedlock was not granted citizenship and many children were effectively rendered effectively stateless as they could only apply for Bahamian nationality upon turning 18years old.”

“The ruling stipulates that “every person born in The Bahamas after July 9, 1973, shall become a citizen of The Bahamas at the date of his birth if at that date either of his parents is a citizen of The Bahamas, irrespective of the marital status of the parents at the time of birth.”

“This brings the legal framework of The Bahamas more into line with international standards on the right to nationality and equality and non-discrimination. We encourage the Government of the Bahamas to build on this ruling and take the necessary legislative, policy and procedural steps to eliminate discrimination on the basis of gender in their nationality laws, and that was a strong recommendation by the Committee on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women.”
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