Human Rights Council encourages further
efforts to enhance the participation of national human rights institutions
across the United Nations
(Geneva, Berlin) - The United Nations Human Rights
Council in a resolution on national human rights institutions (NHRIs) has
underscored the unique role and contributions of NHRIs to the work of the
United Nations, and encouraged further efforts to enhance NHRI participation
across relevant mechanisms and processes.
The resolution encouraged in particular the
development of a common approach by United Nations independent treaty bodies to
engagement between NHRIs and the treaty bodies, in line with the decision of
treaty body Chairpersons at their 28th Annual Meeting to which
GANHRI contributed with a background paper.
The resolution also invites the Expert Mechanism on
the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and the United Nations Permanent Forum
on Indigenous Issues to further enhance the participation of NHRIs in their
The resolution builds on the momentum generated by the
General Assembly's resolution on NHRIs in December 2015 which has
called for NHRIs to be given the opportunity to contribute independently to the
work of different mechanisms and processes within the United Nations.
Adopted without a vote, the resolution was led by
Australia and developed in consultation with the Global Alliance of National
Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI), and enjoys the support of more than 80
states from all regions.
The resolution further
- Welcomes the Mérida
Declaration on the role of national human rights institutions in
implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by NHRIs
in October 2015;
- Reaffirms the
importance of establishing and strengthening independent, pluralistic
NHRIs in accordance with the Paris Principles and the important role that
NHRIs play in protecting and promoting fundamental freedoms and in
strengthening participation, in particular of civil society organizations;
- Stresses that
NHRIs should not face any reprisals or intimidation and calls upon States
to promptly and thoroughly investigate any cases of alleged reprisal or
intimidation, and to bring the perpetrators to justice;
- Commends the
efforts made to date by all relevant United Nations mechanisms and
processes to further enhance the participation of NHRIs in line with UN
General Assembly resolution 70/163, including the Commission on the
Status of Women, the Conference of States Parties to the Convention on the
Rights of Persons with Disabilities and the Open-ended Working Group on
Ageing, and encourages the continuation of these efforts;
- Welcomes the
role of GANHRI and NHRI regional networks in strengthening cooperation
among NHRIs in all regions; and
- Welcomes UN
system-wide coordination in support of NHRIs and the UNDP-OHCHR-GANHRI
Tripartite partnership in particular.
Introducing the resolution to the Council, Australia's
Ambassador John Quinn said “the benefits of enabling national human rights
institutions in compliance with the Paris Principles in the work of the United
Nations in Geneva and New York are seen in the work NHRIs do each and every day
on the ground in order to protect and promote human rights”.
Ambassador Quinn thanked GANHRI as well as all NHRIs
from all regions for their support for this resolution, and said Australia
looked forward to continuing to support NHRIs and their contributions across
the UN system.
“GANHRI welcomes the adoption of this landmark
resolution on national human rights institutions”, said GANHRI's Chairperson,
Prof Dr Beate Rudolf.
“We particularly recognise the principled leadership
of Australia in leading the development of this important resolution, and also
welcome the strong support shown by States from all regions, including Canada,
Costa Rica, Germany, Morocco, New Zealand, the Philippines, Rwanda, Tunisia,
Uruguay, and many others as well as GANHRI members from all regions who have
supported this initiative” Prof Rudolf said.
“We look forward to working with all states, treaty
bodies, civil society and OHCHR and UNDP as we take strides forward in
implementing this resolution”.
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