Iraq UN official welcomes creation of human rights commission

Staffan de Mistura, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, issued a statement in Baghdad calling the creation of the Independent High Commission for Human Rights (IHCHR) “a milestone” that will further existing efforts by the national Government’s human rights ministry, the judiciary, the Council of Representatives, law enforcement agencies and civil society groups.He said the new body will help advance human rights in many spheres, including the civil, cultural, economic, political and social.The Council of Representatives agreed yesterday to the setting up of the IHCHR, which is mandated in the Iraqi constitution, after the proposal was presented by the Council’s human rights committee following months of work.Mr. de Mistura called on both the Council and the Iraqi Government to ensure “the prompt establishment of a strong, credible and independent Commission that from the outset becomes an institution responsive to the needs of the Iraqi citizens, especially those of vulnerable groups such as children, women and minorities,” according to his statement.He stressed that the UN Assistance Mission for Iraq (UNAMI) is ready to help with the selection process for IHCHR members and work the Commission once it is operating, in line with Iraqi law.On Friday, Mr. de Mistura briefed the Security Council at UN Headquarters in New York on the latest developments inside Iraq, warning that the country is entering a critical period as it prepares for upcoming provincial polls.The Special Representative said the polls offered an opportunity to shape a new political landscape in the fledgling democracy, while he cautioned that the potential for election-related violence and instability remains. 17 November 2008The top United Nations official in Iraq today welcomed the country’s establishment of an independent commission to promote and protect human rights in the troubled Middle East country. read more

Real Sociedad beats Celta 21 ends winless streak at home

MADRID — Real Sociedad’s winless streak at home is finally over in the Spanish league.Real Sociedad defeated Celta Vigo 2-1 on Monday to win for the first time in six matches at its Anoeta Stadium.The club had lost twice and drawn three times this season at the newly renovated stadium in the city of San Sebastian.Mikel Oyarzabal scored in 37th minute the David Zurutuza in the 47th to give Real Sociedad its second straight win and extend its unbeaten streak to four matches in all competitions.The result moved Real Sociedad to eighth place in the league, seven points from leader Sevilla.Celta, which drew with Real Sociedad 1-1 at home in a Copa del Rey match this month, dropped to 15th place, three points from the relegation zone.The team from Vigo was debuting Portuguese coach Miguel Cardoso, who replaced fired Argentine manager Antonio Mohamed.Maxi Gomez scored Celta’s lone goal in the 82nd.___More AP soccer: and Associated Press read more