Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2008-07-10-Speech-4-243"

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"Mr President, I welcome the opportunity to debate this particular issue because it is of great concern to many of us in this House whenever, in any part of the world, a significant number of graves come to light that are only accessible with permission of the security forces. Therefore this motion for a resolution – along with the hearing in the Subcommittee on Human Rights next week – takes on an even greater significance because of the political and security situation in the area. As this House well knows, we have ourselves debated that general situation before, perhaps also under less than transparent conditions. There is indeed a history of disappearances in the region. We know that a number of these have been linked to the activities of the security forces. We know that it is the most heavily militarised area in the world. We know that this also is an area where there are arrests and significant detention without trial. Therefore that also colours our interpretation of such findings, making it all the more important that there should be a really open investigation allowing full transparency and full access for the international community. I hope that the European Union will, as the resolution states, offer its support for high-quality forensic expertise and any other assistance which is needed in this investigation, because it is important for our interpretation of what is happening there that we reach the fullest possible understanding. With that also goes – as others have said – the protection of human rights activists who are themselves trying to investigate the issue, such as Pervez Imroz. I think we would all agree that it is the duty of all democratically elected governments to investigate such findings fully in complete transparency, and to try and trace those whose bodies are there and their relatives, so that we can fully understand the situation and not apply various interpretations to it which might not be the truth. I think Parliament is absolutely right to be discussing this issue, and absolutely right to be calling on the Commission to offer its assistance, particularly given the ongoing problems that we are seeing in the region at present."@en1

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