UN expert on toxics and human rights to visit Paraguay

OHCHR

GENEVA (30 September 2022) – The UN Special Rapporteur on toxics and human rights, Marcos Orellana, will visit Paraguay from 3 to 14 October 2022 to assess the country’s human rights situation in relation to hazardous substances and wastes.

Among other issues, the UN expert will study best practices, use of pesticides, the adverse effects of chemicals, and waste management.

“I am pleased to visit Paraguay and report on the progress the country has made on toxics and human rights issues since my predecessor’s visit in 1998,” Orellana said.

The first visit to Paraguay by a UN expert on toxics and human rights resulted in a report with recommendations after the visit.

As part of this second visit, among other topics, the UN expert will also examine issues surrounding monocultures and pesticides, particularly in the context of recent decisions by the Human Rights Committee about pesticide use in Paraguay.

During the visit, the UN expert will visit sites affected by toxic substances and hold meetings with government authorities, civil society, and other stakeholders.

“I look forward to hearing first-hand accounts from local communities to better understand how toxics and contamination affect their lives, their access to information, and the avenues to effective remedy,” Orellana said. “I look forward to learning how my mandate can assist communities and government to find solutions and advocate for good practices to be implemented throughout the country”.

The UN expert will hold a news conference on 14 October from 11:30am to 1:00pm at the auditorium in the National Library in Asunción, where he will share preliminary observations from the visit. Access will be strictly limited to journalists. The conference will also be streamed online via YouTube.

Orellana will present a comprehensive report with his findings and recommendations to the Human Rights Council in September 2023.

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