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(2013-03-15) Mr. Ben Emmerson, the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, visited Pakistan from 11 – 13 March 2013.A part of his work as the UN Special Rapporteur is to study the civilian impact of the use of drones. At present, he is working on his annual report to the General Assembly, which focuses on the civilian impact of the use of drones.

During the visit, the Special Rapporteur called on the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the Advisor to the Prime Minister on Human Rights, the Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Defence and Defence Production, the Foreign Secretary, besides holding talks with senior government officials. In order to ascertain first hand information on drone strikes and its impact on civilians, the Special Rapporteur also met with tribal Maliks and victims of drone strikes in Islamabad.

During interaction with the Special Rapporteur, Pakistan reiterated its known position that drone strikes are counter-productive, against international law and a violation of its sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Mr. Emerson will present his report on the issue of drones during the 68th session of the General Assembly in October 2013.

15 March 2013

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