Concluding Recommendations of the East Asian Regional Tribunal on Evictions 2016

十一月 14, 2017 - 反迫遷連線

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INTERNATIONAL TRIBUNAL ON EVICTIONS – EAST ASIA

 1st Session (Taipei, Taiwan, 2-4 July 2016)

 

The 1st session of the International Tribunal on Evictions – East Asia met in Taipei on 2-4 July as the regional preparatory step to the 5th global session of the International Tribunal on Evictions, to be held as part of the People’s Social Forum for Resisting Habitat III (Quito, 17-20 October 2016).

A Jury, made up of five experts in housing rights, international and domestic laws, and planning studies, drawn from the academic world, NGOs, national and international bodies and activist organisations, heard witness accounts from inhabitants concerned by human rights violations, especially the right to housing due to forced evictions, with the following cases:

  1. The collective case reports on informal settlements in Taipei, Taiwan
  2. The Taoyuan Aerotropolis, Taoyuan, Taiwan
  3. The eviction of Shinjuku Kasumigaoka-cho public housing complex under the Olympic 2020 Stadium Project, Tokyo, Japan
  4. The Yongsan Tragedy, Seoul, South Korea
  5. The eviction of rooftop tenants in Hong Kong, China
  6. The 25 year-long struggles of Pom Mahakan community in Bangkok, Thailand
  7. The Kampung Gatco community in Sembilan, Malaysia
  8. The Sitio San Roque Case in Quezon, the Philippines

The cases presented to the Tribunal were selected from 27 cases, submitted from Hong Kong, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, the Philippines, Taiwan and Thailand in response to a regional call.

List of cases submitted to the 1st Session of ITE-EA:

  1. Shun-Ling Road Redevelopment, Hong Kong
  2. Informal Settlements on the Rooftop, Hong Kong
  3. Shinjuku Kasumigaoka-cho (Olympic 2020 Stadium), Tokyo, Japan
  4. Kampung Permatang Tok Suboh, Penang, Malaysia
  5. Kampung Gatco, Sembilan, Malaysia
  6. Kampung Hakka Mantin, Sembilan, Malaysia
  7. Padang Tembak farm lands in Sungai Siput, Perak, Malaysia
  8. Informal Settlement in Sitio San Roque, Quezon, The Philippines
  9. Jjok-bang in Jung-gu, Seoul, South Korea
  10. Yongsan Tragedy of Urban Renewal, Seoul, South Korea
  11. Forced evictions by militarization, Jeju Island, South Korea
  12. Pom Mahakan, Bangkok, Thailand
  13. Daan Wolong Street, Taipei, Taiwan
  14. Informal Settlements, Taipei, Taiwan
  15. Losheng Sanitorium, New Taipei, Taiwan
  16. Sanxia Town the Liu’s Family, New Taipei, Taiwan
  17. SanChong Da-Tung South Sec. Urban Renewal, New Taipei, Taiwan
  18. Wen Zai Zun Land Re-adjustment Project, New Taipei, Taiwan
  19. Taoyuan Aeropolis, Taoyuan, Taiwan
  20. Dahu Community, Taoyuan, Taiwan
  21. Puyu Farmland Expropriation, HsinChu, Taiwan
  22. Land Expropriation for Railway Eastward, Tainan, Taiwan
  23. Xiaogang – Dalinpu Villiage Resettlement Project, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  24. Xiaogang – HongMaoGang Resettlement (Fish Farm and Sky-lion Temple), Kaohsiung, Taiwan
  25. Choi Yuen Village, Shek Kong, the New Territories, Hong Kong
  26. The Lumads Against Mining Expropriations l Mindanao, The Philippines
  27. Guei-Mei grocery store, Keelung, Taiwan

The selected cases were chosen for their emblematic character and the fact that they express a diverse range of eviction cases.

The figures show almost one million people affected by forced evictions in those cases, fueled by development policies driven by the neoliberal paradigm, especially in forms of public-private partnerships for urban renewal and other urban planning speculation, militarization, land grabbing and mega-projects.

The responsibility for these evictions lies with governments, financial institutions such as the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, the International Olympic Committee, as well as private real estate investors and speculators who enjoy the complicity of local governments.

These cases illustrate just one part of the global picture, since the number of people threatened with evictions for various reasons is estimated at between 60 and 70 million worldwide.

Following the session, the Jury met to draw up its recommendations.

The recommendations address the economic and institutional actors responsible for the forced evictions presented as well as civil society organizations that are supporting the inhabitants concerned.

They will be conveyed to these parties as well as to the representatives of their governments, and other actors the Jury feels to be relevant (United Nations Special Procedures, ESCR Committee), and especially to the UN Habitat Secretariat.

In order to address these specific violations of human rights and to prevent further evictions, the implementation of the recommendations will be monitored on the ground by the ITE-EA Steering Committee partner organizations and the organizations/networks that presented the cases every six months. Especially on the occasion of the World Zero Evictions Days, in October of every year.

Background and facts on human and housing rights violations revealed by the witness accounts

Almost all the countries where cases submitted to the International Tribunal on Evictions – East Asia Session have taken place have ratified the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) and other International Conventions, except Malaysia. But including Taiwan, which has special status not being part of the United Nations because of China’s veto.

Despite that, the evidence presented revealed, at different levels and to different degrees, violations of the legal obligations assumed by the States in question as signatories of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 25), the ICESCR (Article 11), the Convention on the Rights of the Child (Article 27), the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (Articles 14-15), the Convention on Civil and Political Rights (Article 12), the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Article 5), and the International Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (Article 28).

Those violations are highlighted, in particular, by the requests for clarification and recommendations made by the CESCR on the occasion of the periodic review of ICESCR, and by the UN Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living.

The evidence demonstrates that violations particularly affect people living with low incomes, women, migrants, refugees and ethnic minorities.

An element to be pointed out is that the excessive use of force and killing perpetrated by the police carrying out forced evictions (especially the Yongsan Tragedy, Seoul, South Korea; the Sitio San Roque, Quezon, the Philippines) can be recognized as evidence of the violation of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (Article 16).


General Recommendations

The Jury of the ITE-EA considers it essential that all stakeholders should be involved to enforce the right to housing and all related human rights, each according to its characteristics and in dialogue.


To the social organizations:

Considering that their role is essential not only for the warning and prevention of evictions but also to find alternatives, they must commit to developing dialogue and collaboration:

  1. To strengthen networking to tackle evictions and defend housing rights, using joint tools (training courses, solidarity warning system, Regional Zero Evictions Observatory, legal defense, task force) at the national and international level. The opportunity should be taken in the follow-up to the People’s Social Forum for Resisting Habitat 3 (Quito, 17 to 20 October 2016).
  2. Together with all stakeholders that share the same principles, particularly NGOs, local authorities, academics and professionals, and the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing, to find alternatives to evictions.
  3. To take advantage of the United Nations Conference Habitat III (Quito, 17 to 20 October 2016) and its follow-up in order to demand that their respective Governments adhere to their commitment to ICESCR Article 11 and General Comments No. 4 and No. 7.

Recommendations to City Mayors:

  • Mr. M.R. Sukhumbhand Paribatra, Governor of Bangkok Metropolitan Administration, Thailand
  • Mr. Ko Wen-je, the Mayor of Taipei Metropolitan Government, Taiwan
  • Mr. Cheng Wen-Tsan, the Mayor of Taoyuan City Government, Taiwan
  • Ms. Yuriko Koike, the Mayor of Tokyo Metropolitan Government, Japan
  • Mr. Park Won-Soon, the Mayor of Seoul Metropolitan Government, South Korea
  • Mr. Herbert Constantine Bautista, the Mayor of Quezon City, the Philippines
  • Mr. Rodrigo Duterte, President of the Republic of the Philippines
  • Mr. C.-Y. Leung, Chief Executive of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of People’s Republic of China


Recommendations to Ministers:

  • Mr. Marcelino P. Escalada, Jr., Minister of National Housing Authority, the Philippines Government
  • Mr. Ho CHEN-Tan, Minister of Ministry of Transportation and Communication, Taiwan
  • Mr. Kuo-Chi Tseng, Director-general of National Property Administration, Ministry of Finance (MOF), Taiwan
  • Mr. Kim, Seok-Ki, the former Seoul police chief, South Korea
  • Mr. Dato Seri Zambry Abd Kadir, Chief Minister of Perak State, Malaysia
  • Mr. Dato’ Seri Utama Haji Mohamad bin Haji Hasan, Chief Minister of Negeri Sembilan
  • Mr. Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia
  • Mr. Tan Sri Hasmy Agan, Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM)
  • Mr. Leni Robredo, Chief of Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, the Philippines
  • Mr. Prof Judy Taguiwalo, Chief Minister of Social Welfare and Development Department, the Philippines
  • Mr. Taketa Tsunekazu, President of Japan Olympic Committee, Japan
  • Minister of Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of Urban Development, Japan
  • Minister of Tokyo Metropolitan Bureau of General Services, Japan


Recommendations to international Institutions and Organisations:

  • UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing
  • UN-Habitat
  • UNESCO
  • International Olympic Committee
  • World Bank
  • Asian Development Bank.
  • International Olympic Committee
  • The Japanese Olympic Committee
  • Taisei Construction Co. Ltd

 

According to the statistics of the cases submitted to the ITE-EA, almost 1 million people are threatened with eviction in seven countries in East Asia. We the Jury believe this fact is only the tip of the iceberg and needs immediate attention to stop the violations:

  1. The Jury strongly recommends to all branches of government (executive, legislative and judicial), and other public or governmental authorities, at whatever level — national, regional or local, that they take all the necessary measures to declare, implement and respect a two-year moratorium on all forced evictions. The moratorium should last the time required to approve policies, laws, judiciary and administrative mechanisms to introduce into domestic legislation the full respect of international conventions that provide for the respect of the right to housing and related human rights to prevent forced evictions.
  2. The judiciary and the police should participate in training courses to take responsibility for the respect of human rights as enshrined in international conventions in the exercise of their duties.
  3. Recourse to Public-Private-Partnerships for developing urban renewal, town planning and housing recovery should be avoided in favour of cooperative processes with citizen participation.
  4. Adequate public funds should be invested and public and social control of residential real estate markets introduced to strengthen the security of tenancy and tenure.

1. The collective case reports on the informal settlements in Taipei, Taiwan

In the case of Informal Settlements of Taiwan that was presented, the housing rights of victims have been violated, and communities have been forcibly evicted, in particular for the following reasons:

  1. The communities were not adequately consulted.
  2. Police used violence against people who have been evicted, and people who campaigned against eviction were prosecuted and convicted.
  3. Most residents were not relocated; even in cases where residents had been promised relocation, the promises were denied and broken.
  4. While no compensation was proposed, the huge amount of ‘unjust enrichment’ awarded by the courts to owners or administrators of public real estate resulted in an enormous burden on the part of residents.

Specific Recommendations:

  1. The government shall refrain from evicting residents with violence.
  2. The government should take its commitment to implement ICESCR as national law seriously.
  3. Stop criminal prosecutions against those who fight for housing rights.
  4. When a relocation is needed and agreed together with the organisations of inhabitants, that should carry out on site, at a maximum walking distance of 10 minutes, and / or in a manner which ensures that there is no negative impact on the social and economic ties in the area inhabited by the affected people and their access to other human rights, adequate housing, permanent and economically accessible.
  5. Recognize the right to housing also for “Untitled” residents, including the right regarding relocation to adequate housing, permanent and economically accessible.
  6. Stop stigmatizing residents living in informal settlements.
  7. Invite governments to reconsider when residents have been charged for water, electricity, and house tax; the government must have been aware of the fact of their living there, and in such a situation, it may run against good faith to claim for the return of ‘unjust enrichment’.

2. The Taoyuan Aerotropolis, Taoyuan, Taiwan

In the case of Taoyuan Aerotropolis of Taiwan that was presented, the housing rights of victims have been violated, and communities have been forcibly evicted, in particular for the following reasons:

  1. The affected communities have not received the necessary information in time, such as the qualification of relocation, the size of the land to be given back and the relevant restrictions on construction law, therefore a meaningful consultation cannot take place.
  2. People whose land is not to be confiscated but will be affected in other ways, such as the demolition of infrastructure, the nuisance following construction, concerns of security caused by public facilities, are excluded from consultation.
  3. Even though a lot of land expropriated is farming land, the land given back will be mostly land for building sites, which renders farming impossible.
  4. Although the government officials claimed that residents will be relocated, the details revealed so far are not specific enough to access the adequate relocation plan.
  5. While residents with land title are entitled to a portion of land given back as compensation, the land given back is often too small for adequate housing, some residents have therefore been forced to sell their land to real estate brokers; the right to housing of untitled residents is not recognized at all.

Specific Recommendations to Government:

  1. Provide necessary information and make genuine consultation possible.
  2. Provide affected residents with necessary protection, whether the issue is the deprivation of real property; or, otherwise, all the human rights, including the right to housing of titled and untitled residents should be fully recognized.
  3. Compensation for expropriation shall be measured against the requirement of relocation, not the price of the real estate expropriated.
  4. Curb the rising of real estate price resulting from the Aerotropolis plan and the commercial speculation that follows.
  5. Reconsider the viability of giving back farming land.
  6. When a relocation is needed and agreed together with the organisations of inhabitants, that should carry out on site, at a maximum walking distance of 10 minutes, and/ or in a manner which ensures that there is no negative impact on the social and economic ties in the area inhabited by the affected people and their access to other human rights, adequate housing, permanent and economically accessible.

3. The eviction of Shinjuku Kasumigaoka-cho public housing complex under the Olympic 2020 Stadium Project, Tokyo, Japan

In the case of Shinjuku Kasumigaoka-cho/ Olympic 2020 stadium that was presented, the human rights of the victims have been violated, the community of 230 families had been living in fear and 227 families were finally forced to leave their houses, by the following factors:

  1. The community was not adequately consulted by Tokyo Metropolitan Government (TMG) and Japan Sports Council (JSC).
  2. Most of the evictees were elderly, and for the 227 families who were relocated, the location and the apartment did not meet the residents’ needs.

Specific Recommendations:

  1. TMG should stop any eviction efforts at Kasumigaoka-cho and let 227 families return to Kasumigaoka-cho as per their wishes.
  2. TMG and JSC should respect the right of everyone, especially for 3 families who now live at Kasumigaoka-cho, to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health and also to taking part in the cultural life.
  3. The International Olympic Committee needs to ensure that it enacts a no-eviction policy for any host-city in the future.

4. The Yongsan Tragedy, Seoul, South Korea

In the case of eviction carried out at Yongsan District 4, Seoul, South Korea, that was presented, the housing rights of victims have been violated, and communities have been forcibly evicted, in particular for the following reasons:

  1. The communities were not adequately consulted.
  2. Police from the Seoul Metropolitan Agency used violence against people who have been evicted, resulting in five people (evictees) and one Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) member killed, besides more people who campaigned against eviction and were prosecuted and convicted.
  3. Most residents, especially the tenants, were not relocated.
  4. The compensation proposed was totally insufficient for an adequate relocation in respect of human rights.

Specific Recommendations to Government:

  1. The government should recognize excessive use of police force and all responsibility lies on dead and surviving forced evictees, and install, no later than 20/01/17, the tragedy memorial.
  2. Stop criminal prosecutions against those who fight for housing rights.
  3. When a relocation is needed and agree together with the organisations of inhabitants, that should carry out on site, at a maximum walking distance of 10 minutes, and / or in a manner which ensures that there is no negative impact on the social and economic ties in the area inhabited by the affected people and their access to other human rights, adequate housing, permanent and economically accessible.
  4. Recognize all the human rights, including the right to housing also to the ‘tenants’ or ‘untitled’ residents, including the right regarding relocation to adequate housing, permanent and economically accessible.

5. The Eviction of Rooftop Tenants in Hong Kong, China

In the case of eviction from Mong Kok neighborhood, Hong Kong, China, that was presented, the housing rights of victims have been violated, because the tenants are affected by appalling and inhuman living conditions, they are threatened and have been forcibly evicted, despite the fact that they pay their rent, mortgage, electricity and water bills, in particular for the following reason:

  1. The removal orders were issued 10 to 20 years ago, but the housing department did not take any action, and the new tenants or residents moving in did not receive notice of it.
  2. Most of the evictees are immigrants, the elderly and single-parent families, often excluded from the waiting list for public social housing.

Specific Recommendations to Government:

  1. Approve and implement specific laws on tenant rent control and tenancy right protection, taking into account family income.
  2. Extend to all persons who have recognized housing needs, regardless of their status as resident citizens, migrants or refugees, the opportunity to access the waiting lists for public social housing.
  3. In the meantime, cease immediately all expropriations and evictions that do not fully comply with all human rights.
  4. Guarantee the right to appeal in domestic courts for the affected individuals and households and their organisations, and to provide effective legal remedies, adequate compensation and guarantees of adequate alternative housing.
  5. Ensure that any relocation necessary for urban renewal is carried out by government and the urban renewal authority after prior consultation with the affected individuals and households, with their free, prior and informed consent and with full respect for all human rights, safety and dignity following an appropriate and transparent procedure.
  6. Respect participatory planning initiated by the communities.
  7. Ensure specific and immediate health care to the tenants, elderly persons and families.

6. The 25 year-long struggle of the Pom Mahakan Community in Bangkok, Thailand:

The human rights of the members of the Pom Mahakan community in Bangkok have been violated, and the community of approximately 300 people has been threatened with forced evictions for 25 years. The following factors are especially deplorable:

  1. The communities have not been adequately consulted by the Government of Thailand and the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration (hereafter “BMA”) about the proposed beautification of the Pom Mahakan site as part of the implementation of the Rattanakosin Conservation and Development Plan.
  2. The community and residents have been intentionally defamed by various officials of the BMA as a squatter settlement harboring drug users and purveyors, violent criminals, and domestic abusers.
  3. The relocation proposal was not adequate, particularly because the proposed location is too remote and offers no employment opportunities such as would permit the residents to continue their life as community.
  4. No adequate compensation adjustment has been proposed by BMA despite the fact that the original compensation was clearly too small to cover even basic needs.

Specific Recommendations:

  1. The BMA should cease and desist from all and every attempt to evict the Pom Mahakan community from now on.
  2. Since the relevant Royal Decree was released in 1992 (i.e., 25 years ago), many studies show that the intended park project does not fit with public needs. The BMA should reconsider the Royal Decree and propose a new scheme to the cabinet, which can then request a new Royal Decree that would solve the problem in an equitable and just fashion.
  3. The BMA must cease its attacks on the community’s reputation. Not only has the community consistently worked to negotiate with the BMA for a mutually satisfactory solution (such as the one briefly achieved under Governor Apirak Kosayodhin in 2004 but subsequently overturned through the legal maneuverings of the BMA bureaucrats), but it has demonstrated remarkable skills of self-management; in particular, it has achieved the enviable goal of creating a drug-free environment without using violence and in full cooperation with the relevant police authorities. The BMA should therefore capitalize on this remarkable human resource rather than relying on slanderous attacks on people whose only desire is to work with the BMA authorities.
  4. As the community has the right to housing, and to the continuous improvement of living conditions, as well as right to work, the BMA should take seriously the community’s proposed land-sharing plan through a participatory process that recognizes the community as an equal partner.
  5. Given the community’s impressive demonstration of its commitment to the maintenance of its living traditions and heritage, the BMA and the national government should take the wishes of the Pom Mahakan community (and of other affected communities) into serious account and should update the Rattanakosin Conservation and Development Plan to accommodate and make use of this significant contribution to the nation’s cultural life.
  6. UNESCO and other international organizations specializing in cultural heritage and the preservation of monuments and of vernacular architecture should be involved in advocating a social and human rights perspective in the revitalization of heritage projects in Bangkok.
  7. In Pom Mahakan, Thailand has one truly extraordinary demonstration of a capacity – demonstrated in varying degrees by other poor communities throughout the country – for effective self-management and for the sustained care of the architectural and historical heritage in which the community is situated. We call on the BMA and the Government of Thailand to acknowledge this remarkable resource as something in which city and nation can take justifiable pride and to do all within their power to preserve – rather than destroy – what could be a significant Thai contribution to global concerns with effective and participatory local governance, social justice, and the protection of heritage.

7. The Kampung Gatco community in Sembilan, Malaysia

In the case of Kampung Gatco Community, Malaysia that was presented, the human rights of victims, especially the rights to adequate housing and living, have been violated and the community of 468 sugar cane farmers now Rubber Estate Settlers has been threatened by forced evictions, with the involvement of the following actors:

  1. The National Union of Plantation Workers (NUPW), which spearheaded the “Sugarcane Smallholders Settlement Scheme” in 1975 and under which the community was established.
  2. GATCO Limited, under NUPW which in charge the scheme, should take full responsibility. This responsibility is not limited to the operation of sugarcane plantation now rubber plantation but the protection of basic living conditions for the settlers. Their basic living conditions include housing protection and family livelihood.
  3. Thamarai Limited, whose claim on the possession of land belonging to the Gatco community is legally inadequate. The company is also accountable for different threatening measures employed for land grabbing, such as using mobsters to forcefully evict the settlers from the plantation ground to clear the land and sell the rubber tree log even the land dispute still ongoing.
  4. The Negeri Sembilan state government, Negeri Sembilan Economic Development Agency, Land Department, police department are responsible for using state power for evictions. This is a sign of close collaboration between state government and private development.
  5. The Court should consider the fact that villagers paid to get back their land in 1977 and 2004 and deliver a just and fair decision. However, the Court has not yet made its decision. The Court decision may not be compatible with Article 11 of ICESCR which ensures the protection of the land rights for livelihood as a human right.

Specific Recommendations:

  1. To strengthen solidarity among villagers. A solidarity network could extend to nearby regions, national and international organizations to establish interaction, trust and mutual aid.
  2. The continuation of legal action and the emphasis on the implementation of International Conventions.
  3. Disclosure of the case. To submit the case to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing and to United Nations Human Settlements Programme on the reality of eviction, abuse of power from the police and military and the process of court action.
  4. To request that the Malaysia ratify and that the government implement and respect the ICESCR, especially the right to housing as a human right through international relations and demanding a response from United Nations.

8. The Sitio San Roque Case in Quezon, the Philippines

In the case of eviction carried out at Sitio San Roque, Bagon Pag-asa Barangay, Quezon City, the Philippines, that was presented, human rights, especially the housing rights of victims, have been violated, and communities have been forcibly evicted, in particular for the following reasons:

  1. The communities were not adequately consulted.
  2. Police and SWAT used violence against people who have been evicted, resulting in 309 physical assaults on people (167 children and minors), violation of domicile (17), arbitrary arrests and detention (11, 2 minors).
  3. Most residents, especially the tenants, were not relocated.
  4. The compensation proposed was totally insufficient for an adequate relocation in respect of human rights.

Specific Recommendations:

  1. The government should recognize excessive use of police force and all responsibility.
  2. Stop criminal prosecutions against those who fight for housing rights.
  3. Relocation on site, at a maximum walking distance of 10 minutes and/ or in a manner which ensures that there is no negative impact on the social and economic ties in the area inhabited by the affected people and their access to other human rights, on adequate housing, permanent and economically accessible.
  4. Recognize the right to housing of “tenant” or “untitled” residents, including the right regarding relocation to adequate housing, permanent and economically accessible.

 

The ITE-EA Jury

  • Cesare Ottolini, Padua, Italy, Global Coordinator of the International Alliance of Inhabitants, Steering Committee member of the International Tribunal on Evictions.
  • Elisa Sutanudjaja, Jakarta, Indonesia, Program Director at Rujak Center for Urban Studies (RCUS).
  • Soha Ben Slama, Coordinator for Tunisia of the International Alliance of Inhabitants, Steering Committee Member of the International Tribunal on Evictions.
  • Sun, Kiàn-Tì 孫健智, Tainan, Taiwan, judge.
  • Tsai, Pei-Huei 蔡培慧, Yuchi Township, Nantou County, Taiwan, associate professor of the Graduate Institute for Social Transformation Studies, Shih-Hsin University, legislator-at-large in Legislative Yuan, Taiwan.


The ITE-EA Steering Committee

Collaborators


Members of the ITE-EA Steering Committee
|東亞迫遷法庭籌備委員會


Tribunal Rapporteurs

  • Sun, Kiàn-Tì 孫健智, Tainan, Taiwan, judge.
  • Soha Ben Slama, Coordinator for Tunisia of the IAI, Steering Committee Member of the International Tribunal on Evictions.

 

Appendix

The Right to Housing

1.
The right to housing is a basic human right recognized for all persons, irrespective of variety of tenancy forms (rental accommodation, cooperative housing, lease, owner-occupation, emergency housing or informal settlements), by many international instruments, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (article 25), International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (article 11), the Convention on Rights of the Child (article 27), the Convention on the Elimination of all forms of Discrimination against Women (article 14), the Convention on Civil and Political Rights (art. 12), the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and the International (art. 5), the Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (art. 28).

2.
The right to housing must be interpreted broadly to include the right to live somewhere in security, peace and dignity [1].

3.
States are prohibited from carrying out, encouraging or tolerating forced evictions, defined as the permanent or temporary removal against their will of individuals, families and/or communities from the homes and/or land which they occupy, without the provision of, and access to, appropriate forms of legal or other protection [2].

4.
An eviction is forced and therefore illegal if it does not incorporate one of the following elements [3]:

  1. an opportunity for genuine consultation with those affected;
  2. adequate and reasonable notice for all affected persons prior to the scheduled date of eviction;
  3. information on the proposed evictions, and, where applicable, on the alternative purpose for which the land or housing is to be used, to be made available in reasonable time to all those affected;
  4. especially where groups of people are involved, government officials or their representatives to be present during an eviction;
  5. all persons carrying out the eviction to be properly identified;
  6. provision of legal remedies;
  7. provision, where possible, of legal aid to persons who are in need of it to seek redress from the courts.

5.
An eviction will also be deemed illegal where those evicted are not rehoused in adequate conditions, and if they are not guaranteed a fair and equitable compensation, even when they do not have title deeds [4].

6.
Following an eviction, no one must become homeless or victim of violations of other human rights, including the right to education, health, food, water and work [5]. Evictions must not take place in inclement weather, at night, during festivals or religious holidays, prior to elections or during or just prior to school examinations [6].

7.
It should be pointed out that all branches of government (executive, legislative and judicial), and other public or governmental authorities, at whatever level — national, regional or local — are in a position to engage the responsibility of the State Party [7].

  1.  

    [1] UN ESCR Committee, General Comment 4 on the right to adequate housing, par. 7. See also the Commission of Human Rights, Report of the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing, Miloon Kothari, UN document A/HRC/7/16 (February 2008), para. 4.

    [2] UN ESCR Committee, General Comment 7 on forced evictions, par. 3.

    [3] UN ESCR Committee, General Comment 7 on forced evictions, par. 15.

    [4] Commission on Human Rights, Report presented by Miloon Kothari, Report of the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, E/CN.4/2006/41, par. 60-61.

    [5] UN ESCR Committee, General Comment 7 on forced evictions, par. 10.

    [6] Commission on Human Rights, Report presented by Miloon Kothari, Report of the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, E/CN.4/2006/41, par. 49.

    [7] This finds expression, in the context of federal States, in Article 28 of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, and article 50 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights which affirm: “The provisions of the present Covenant shall extend to all parts of federal States without any limitations or exceptions.”

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