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news - Update: Ban Expresses Disappointment That Zimbabwe Blocks UN Torture Expert

october 29th, 2009

"Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has voiced his disappointment that the invitation extended by the Zimbabwean Government to the United Nations independent expert on torture was suddenly revoked yesterday.

Manfred Nowak, the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, was invited by the Government on 1 October to conduct a fact-finding mission from 28 October to 4 November.

Despite a written invitation by Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, he was not allowed into the country upon arrival at the airport in the capital, Harare.

Mr. Ban supports the call issued by the High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay 'on the Government of Zimbabwe to give full access to the human rights mechanisms of the United Nations,' his spokesperson Michele Montas told reporters in New York.

'More generally, the Secretary-General regrets the circumstances that led to the decision of the Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) to temporarily disengage from the Cabinet and Council of Ministers in Zimbabwe,' she added."

MORE: "Ban expresses disappointment that Zimbabwe blocks UN torture expert" (UN News Centre)

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