Policy Dialogue on ‘The Human Rights Council-Security Council relationship: strengthening coherence as a key contribution to the UN prevention agenda’
On Monday and Tuesday 23 & 24 November 2020, the Permanent Missions of Germany in Geneva and New York, together with the Universal Rights Group Offices in Geneva and New York, hosted a digital policy dialogue to discuss ‘The Human Rights Council-Security Council relationship: strengthening coherence as a key contribution to the UN prevention agenda’.
The two day policy dialogue brought together around 75 human rights experts and practitioners from Permanent Missions in New York and Geneva, UN agencies, the UN Secretariat, academics, civil society, and independent experts, and provided an informal and open space for exchange, as well as the generation of new and innovative thinking around the topic. As such the meeting was held under the ‘Chatham House rule.’
In particular, it discussed the historic and contemporary nature of the relationship between the Human Rights Council (and the wider UN human rights system) and the Security Council (and the wider UN security pillar – including the EOSG), and tested the hypothesis that prevention offers an ideal lens and framework to recalibrate that relationship, boost coherence and – ultimately – to protect human rights and save lives. Building on these discussions, at a more practical level the policy dialogue strove to identify concrete steps forward to construct a more coherent relationship between the Human Rights Council and Security Council, one built around a common goal: to effectively prevent human rights violations, crises, violent conflict and recurrence.
Day one consisted of opening remarks and high-level keynote addresses followed by brief presentations on the topics of discussion by the Rapporteurs of the three breakout groups. Participants were divided into three parallel breakout groups for more in-depth interactive discussion. Day two consisted of a closing plenary, during which the Rapporteurs of each breakout group reported back with the key takeaways for a facilitated discussion with all participants. The day concluded with closing remarks by the Chair.
This dialogue fed into an analysis being conducted by URG on the relationship between the Human Rights Council and the Security Council, which will result in a policy report proposing practical steps that could be taken by States and other stakeholders to strengthen coherence and turn the UN into an effective force for prevention, in line with the Secretary-General’s reform agenda. The policy report will be made available here.
Documents are available below:
- Concept note
- Draft programme
- Background paper for break-out group 1
- Background paper for break-out group 2
- Background paper for break-out group 3
- List of participants
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