Choi Kyong-lim ( seventh from the left) President of the Human Rights Council pose with the eight former présidents of the Human Rights Council during opening day of the 32nd session of the Human Right Council. 13 June 2016. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré

Report on the 32nd Session of the Human Rights Council

by the URG team International human rights institutions, mechanisms and processes, URG Human Rights Council Reports

Quick summary  The 32nd regular session of the Human Rights Council (HRC32) was held from 13 June 2016 to 8 July 2016. HRC32 marked the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the Council.  At the opening of the session, statements were delivered by Mr Choi Kyonglim, President of the Human Rights Council, Mr Didier Burkhalter, Head of the Federal Department of Foreign …

A general view of participants during opening day of the 32nd session of the Human Right Council. 13 June 2016. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré

The Rights Minded Group

by Bob Last, Permanent Mission of the UK to the UN in Geneva, Gisele Fernandez Ludlow, Permanent Mission of Mexico to the UN in Geneva and Bakary Bamba Junior, Permanent Representation of OIF Blog, By invitation, International human rights institutions, mechanisms and processes

  The Council blew out the candles on its 10th birthday cake in June. As delegates working from different perspectives, who were there at the birth, who saw the Council take its first baby steps, and who have seen it grow and develop, here’s a shared view on how far we’ve come.   Ten years ago there was optimism that …

A general view of participants at the 16th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland.

URG holds second global media HRC engagement programme

by Hilary Power URG News

During the last week of the 32nd session of the Council, the URG, with the support of the Government of Germany and the Canton of Geneva, brought 7 journalists – from Afghanistan, Belarus, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Ecuador and Kenya – to Geneva to follow developments, especially during voting.    During their time in Geneva, the journalists benefited from briefing sessions with URG analysts, key diplomats, …

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The World Bank: a human rights-free zone?

by Philip Alston, United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights Blog

This article first appeared on openGlobalRights, and has been reproduced with their kind permission. The existing approach taken by the World Bank to human rights is incoherent, counterproductive and unsustainable. It is based on an out-dated legal analysis and shaped by deep misperceptions of what a human rights policy would require. In its operational policies in particular, the Bank treats …

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URG provides testimony at US Congressional hearing on functioning and effectiveness of Human Rights Council

by Hilary Power Blog, URG News

On 17th May, Marc Limon, Universal Rights Group’s Executive Director, offered testimony during a US Congressional Hearing (House of Representatives) entitled: ‘Ten Years Later: The Status of the United Nations Human Rights Council.’    The hearing was organised by the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission and sought to examine the current functioning and effectiveness of the Council, and also look assess …

picture of Nepal delegation UPR copy

Nepal’s engagement in the UPR process and recommendations for improvements of the mechanism

by Joint Secretary Ramesh Dhakal, Office of the Prime Minister and Council of Ministers of Nepal and Mie Roesdahl, PhD Fellow, Centre for Resolution of International Conflicts, University of Copenhagen, and Danish Institute for Human Rights Blog, By invitation, International human rights institutions, mechanisms and processes

Nepal underwent its second review by the Working Group of the Human Rights Council as part of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process on November 4th 2015. The review was the culmination of a long process of internally reviewing the status of implementation of Nepal’s recommendations from the first review, inter-ministerial coordination and workshops, consultations with a broad range of …

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The Like Minded Group (LMG): Speaking truth to power

by Amr Essam, 2nd Secretary at the Permanent Mission of Egypt to the UN in Geneva Blog, By invitation, International human rights institutions, mechanisms and processes

When, in 2005, the UN General Assembly agreed on the geographical segmentation of the membership of the new Human Rights Council, it was widely believed that developing countries would enjoy an ‘automatic majority’ in the newly established body and thus that the priorities and concerns of the global South would be adequately reflected and addressed. This theoretical disposition did not …

UNOG flags return after renovation

How to push the implementation of human rights forward? A new strategy for a renewed commitment

by H.E. Didier Burkhalter, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland Blog, By invitation, International human rights institutions, mechanisms and processes

Fostering respect for human rights is one of Switzerland’s foreign policy objectives, as provided for in our Federal Constitution. In Switzerland, promoting and protecting human rights is essential to direct democracy because it forms the basis for the freedom and security of every individual. At the international level, respect for human rights contributes to peace and global security, to the …

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Christof Heyns joins URG Board of Trustees

by Hilary Power Blog, Press, URG News

The Universal Rights Group (URG) is pleased to welcome Professor Christof Heyns, UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, to its Board of Trustees. Commenting on his appointment, Professor Heyns said: “I am very happy to join the URG Board. I am a solid supporter of the URG approach: they facilitate important discussions, conduct relevant and credible research …

A general view of participants at the 31st regular session of the Human Rights Council. 10 March 2016. UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré

The 31st session of the Human Rights Council gives cause for cautious optimism

by Peter Sørensen, Ambassador, Head of Delegation of the European Union to the UN, Geneva Blog, By invitation

In his statement to the 31st session, the High Commissioner for Human Rights spoke of a “growing disarray in many countries.” This is a sad conclusion to be drawn; yet it undoubtedly reflects the reality of today’s world. Around the globe, old conflicts persist and new ones erupt, and despite the hard lessons of the 20th Century, men still commit …