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Latest policy reports

URG’s new Policy Report on ‘The march of universality?’ by Başak Çalı and Mariana Montoya presents the findings of a two-year project to map and analyse the implications of all reservations to the core human rights conventions, and to better understand the extent and nature of these key checks on the universality of human rights.…

PREVIOUS REPORTS

Environmental human rights defenders (EHRDs): risking their today for our tomorrow

by John H. Knox, Special Rapporteur on the human rights and the environment

URG today launches a new Policy Brief on the situation of ‘environmental human rights defenders’ (EHRDs), individuals working, often at great personal risk, at the interface of human rights and…

6th meeting of the Istanbul Process

by The URG team

On 20-21 July 2016, the Government of Singapore hosted the sixth meeting of the Istanbul Process, organised in collaboration with the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS). The meeting…

Media coverage of the United Nations Human Rights Council in 2016

Global human rights crises and concerns are never far for the front pages of the world’s major newspapers, nor far from the screens of our TVs and iPads. Yet this…

The Human Rights Council in 2016

by The URG team

The ‘Human Rights Council in 2016’ report provides a critique of the main events, developments, successes and failures of the Human Rights Council in 2016. The review includes:  – A quantitative…

URG Insights

The United Nations should create freedom from corruption as a human right

by Matthew H. Murray*

Matthew Murray is an international lawyer who was a senior advisor in the Obama Administration on anti-corruption issues from 2012-2017.  He served as Deputy Assistant Secretary for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for the U.S. Department of Commerce from 2012-2015 and Senior Advisor on Governance and Rule of Law for the US Agency for…

Previous URG Insights

Modernising the United Nations human rights system

by Dr. Bertrand G. Ramcharan

In its weekend edition of 15-16 February 2014, the Financial Times serialised extracts from a recent book: ‘In 100 years: Leading Economists Predict the Future,’ edited by Ignacio Palacios-Huerta and published by MIT Press. In one of the extracts, Nobel Laureate for economics, Robert Shiller, Professor of Economics at Yale University, wrote that the next…

Time to scrap the world’s remaining blasphemy laws

by Joelle Fiss

Last May, Ireland woke up to the strange news that the Irish police were investigating remarks made by actor Stephen Fry, which, it was alleged, might be considered blasphemous. In a 2015 television interview, Fry had accused God of being a selfish maniac, and asked: ‘why should I respect a capricious, mean-minded, stupid God who…

Report on the 35th Session of the Human Rights Council

by the URG team

Quick summary  The 35th regular session of the Human Rights Council (HRC35) was held from Tuesday 6th June to Friday 23rd June 2017. On 6th June, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, H.E. Mr Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, presented an oral update on the global human rights situation. A number of dignitaries delivered statements during the session, including inter…

Building on past success and dealing with the challenges: ideas for strengthening technical cooperation at the Human Rights Council

by Marc Limon

The central importance of the Council’s mandate, as set down in GA resolution 60/251, to provide ‘advisory services, technical assistance and capacity-building … in consultation with and with the consent of Member States concerned,’ is, I believe, self-evident. For many developing countries, especially Least Developed Countries (LDCs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS), the task…