The EU and its Member States would like to thank the Special Rapporteur for her valuable work.
The topic you have chosen for your new report could not be more relevant. Internal displacement is almost intrinsically linked to violations of human rights, including those in relation with housing, land and property rights. Gaps in the respect for and implementation of housing, land and property rights can cause forced displacement, as well as arise as a consequence of it.
Since 2016, the EU has taken a comprehensive, development-led approach to addressing the needs of IDPs and their host communities. The EU and its Member States recognise the importance of linkages between sustainable development, humanitarian assistance, climate change, conflict prevention, peacebuilding and human rights. This is closely related to the policy work done by the EU with its external partners, multilateral, bilateral and regional, including in Geneva with the High Level Panel and the Platform on Disaster Displacement.
Addressing housing, land and property rights is crucial for equitable, safe and durable solutions for IDPs, and in order to prevent secondary and multiple displacements. We are especially concerned about the strong gender component of human rights violations disproportionately affecting IDPs. Pre-existing discrimination on the basis of gender, including with regard to their right to inheritance, exacerbates women’ and girls vulnerability during displacement situations and hampers durable solutions. Land ownership should not be restricted to men, neither by tradition nor by law. Limited access to adequate housing opportunities for women and girls also represents an increased risk of sexual and gender-based violence.
Madame Special Rapporteur,
What policies should be taken in order to protect women’s housing, land and property rights in a sustainable way, especially when they are dealing with forced displacement?