Superpower rivalry ‘captures’ the Human Rights Council

by Marc Limon, Executive Director of the Universal Rights Group Blog, Blog

As argued in the Universal Rights Group’s end of session report , the recently concluded 48th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC48) was one of the most acrimonious gatherings in the fifteen-year history of the Council, with heightened contemporary geopolitical tensions spilling over into, and in many ways ‘capturing,’ the critical wider work of the UN’s main human rights body. Much of the …

Report on the 48th session of the Human Rights Council

by the URG team Blog, Blog, Instituciones, procesos y mecanismos de derechos humanos internacionales, Reportes del Consejo de Derechos Humanos

Quick summary The 48th regular session of the Human Rights Council ( HRC48 ) was held from Monday 13 September to Monday 11 October 2021. On 13 September, H.E. Michelle Bachelet presented her global update on the human rights situation around the world, followed by her report on Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of) and oral updates on Afghanistan, Nicaragua, and Sri Lanka. An enhanced …

Boosting the financial transparency of UN Special Procedures

by Gregor Puppinck, Director of the European Centre for Law and Justice (ECLJ) Blog, Blog, By invitation, Instituciones, procesos y mecanismos de derechos humanos internacionales

I was very surprised, roughly a year ago, to find out that several UN Special Procedures mandate-holders (independent UN human rights experts), were receiving substantial financial contributions from governments, and even from private foundations, and that many of those contributions are made without any kind of formal financial oversight or transparency. I therefore decided to look further into this issue, …

Report of the 31st Special Session of the Human Rights Council on the Serious Human Rights Concerns and Situation in Afghanistan

by the URG team Blog, Blog, Instituciones, procesos y mecanismos de derechos humanos internacionales, Reportes del Consejo de Derechos Humanos

On Tuesday 24 August 2021, the Human Rights Council convened a special session to address the ‘serious human rights concerns and situation in Afghanistan’. The special session was requested via an  official letter  dated 17 August 2021 and signed by H.E. Khalil Hashmi, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan to the UN in Geneva, in his capacity as …

Can President Biden’s Infrastructure Bill help the US build back better on economic, social and cultural rights?

by Daniela Kyle, Universal Rights Group NYC Blog, Blog, New York City, Universal Rights Group NYC

On 10 August, the United States Senate approved the $1 trillion bipartisan Infrastructure Bill that had been proposed and supported by President Biden as the first phase in his Build Back Better agenda. The bill will be the largest long-term investment in American infrastructure in nearly a century, and is expected to make the American economy ‘more sustainable, resilient and just.’ The White House stated that …

41st Session of the Human Rights Council.

Where do things stand with the 2021-2026 review of the Council’s status?

by Marc Limon, Executive Director of the Universal Rights Group Blog, Blog, Instituciones, procesos y mecanismos de derechos humanos internacionales

On 9 June, the President of the Human Rights Council, H.E. Ambassador Nazhat Khan (Fiji), convened an informal exchange on the General Assembly’s review of the Council’s status, due to be conducted between 2021 and 2026. This was the first time Geneva delegations had had the opportunity to consider the ‘2021-2026 review’ since the summer of 2019, when it had …

Building a coherent Human Rights Council-Security Council relationship – The prevention of human rights crises, violent conflict and atrocity crimes

by the URG team Instituciones, procesos y mecanismos de derechos humanos internacionales, Policy reports, Reportes

In her first address to the United Nations General Assembly’s (UNGA) Third Committee as High Commissioner for Human Rights in 2018, Michelle Bachelet urged States to remember that ‘the human rights system is not a Cassandra, correctly predicting crises yet unable to prevent them. It is a force for prevention. When it is backed by the political will of key …

US-China-Russia rivalry spills over into the Human Rights Council

by Marc Limon, Executive Director of the Universal Rights Group Blog, Blog

Towards the end of last year, Bahrain’s ambassador in Geneva suddenly threw his hat into the ring for the presidency of the Human Rights Council – potentially blocking the previously unopposed candidacy of Fiji’s ambassador, Nazhat Shameem Khan. Then, earlier this month, Belarus and Cuba delivered two joint statements at the Council, attacking EU member States and the UK, and calling on …

‘Diplomacy is back’ US President Biden prioritizes diplomacy in his first major foreign policy speech, while his Secretary of State announces ‘robust’ re-engagement with Human Rights Council

by Tess Brennan, Universal Rights Group NYC Blog, Blog, Universal Rights Group NYC

On Thursday 4 February 2021, Biden delivered his first major foreign policy speech . His decision to deliver the speech from the US State Department reflected his rhetoric on reinvesting resources and trust in America’s diplomats, and his words indicated an approach to international policy marked by working with traditional US allies to protect democracy and human rights globally. Promising action …

Prospects and priorities for the Human Rights Council in 2021

by H.E Nazhat Shameem Khan, 15th President of the Human Rights Council, Permanent Representative of Fiji to the United Nations and other International Organisations in Geneva Blog, Blog, By invitation, Uncategorized @lac

It is my distinct pleasure to wish you bula vinaka, the traditional Fijian greeting, meaning, roughly, ‘happiness and good health,’ as we begin a new year at the Human Rights Council. It is a singular honour for me, and for the government and people of Fiji, that the members of the Human Rights Council have placed their trust in me …