COUNCIL MONITOR - 23 - 27 June 2014
COUNCIL MONITOR
23 - 27 June 2014

VIDEO:
Side event on business and human rights defenders

A video of highlights from ISHR's side event on business and human rights defenders is now online. 

OPINION

‘Protect life’ during demonstrations

Christof Heyns, UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary, or arbitrary executions

An important element of ensuring a higher level of protection of the right to life worldwide will be to bring domestic laws on the use of force by law enforcement officials into greater conformity with international standards. The central document in this regard is the Basic Principles on the use of force and firearms of 1990. As regards the use of lethal force, international standards require compliance with, what I call, the ‘protect life’ principle – it may be used only in response to a genuinely immediate threat to life, where there is no other alternative… more

Human Rights Council session ends

CALL TO PROTECT FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION AND HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDERS
 
The 26th session of the UN Human Rights Council has closed with a reminder that human rights defenders in many parts of the world continue to be arrested and imprisoned for exercising their rights to freedom of expression, and a statement of regret that States within the Human Rights Council itself are seeking to stifle debate and promote resolutions that are incompatible with international human rights standards... more 

ISHR ADVOCACY

Human Rights Council adopts major resolutions on business and human rights but misses opportunity to protect defenders 

The UN Human Rights Council has missed a significant opportunity to strengthen the protection of human rights defenders who work to promote corporate respect for human rights and corporate accountability for human rights violations, the International Service for Human Rights has said… more

States silence debate on family diversity at Human Rights Council

The UN Human Rights Council has adopted a resolution on the ‘Protection of the Family’ which ignores the reality that various forms of family exist, and does not comply with international human rights standards, the International Service for Human Rights has said… more
 
Côte d’Ivoire: Continue cooperation with UN human rights expert
 
Côte d'Ivoire is making positive progress in the promotion and protection of human rights and should continue to cooperate with a UN human rights expert appointed to assist the country in this regard, said ISHR... more

Resolutions adopted

  • Accelerating efforts to eliminate all forms of violence against women
  • Cooperation and assistance to Ukraine in the field of human rights
  • Draft decision on the negative impact of corruption on the enjoyment of human rights
  • Elaboration of international legally binding instrument on TNCs and Other Business Enterprises with respect to human rights
  • Elimination of discrimination against women
  • Extreme poverty and human rights
  • Human rights and arbitrary deprivation of nationality
  • Human rights and climate change
  • Human rights and the regulation of civilian acquisition, possession and use of firearms
  • Human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises
  • Implementation of the International Decade for People of African Descent
  • International Albinism Awareness Day
  • Mandate of the independent expert on human rights and international solidarity
  • Mandate of the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions
  • Mandate of the special rapporteur on the human rights of migrants
  • Mandate of the special rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers
  • Mandate of the Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children
  • Presidential statement on prevention of terrorist attacks
  • Promotion and protection of human rights in post-disaster and post-conflict situations
  • Promotion and protection of the human rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas
  • Promotion of the right of migrants to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health
  • Protection of Roma
  • Protection of the family
  • Renforcement de capacités et cooperation technique avec la Côte d’Ivoire dans le domaine des droits de l’homme
  • Situation of human rights in Belarus
  • Situation of human rights in Eritrea
  • Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities
  • Technical and capacity- building assistance for South Sudan in Human Rights
  • The continuing grave deterioration in the human rights and humanitarian situation in the Syrian Arab Republic
More details on these resolutions can be found on the OHCHR extranet. Use the following login details (username: hrc extranet, password: 1session)
 
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KEY DEVELOPMENTS

More than 500 NGOs call on Council to take systematic action on sexual orientation and gender identity

The shocking range of human rights violations suffered by people on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity has been highlighted in a statement to the Council by more than 500 NGOs from more than 100 countries around the world, including ISHR. The NGOs called for the Council to ensure regular reporting, constructive dialogue and sustained, systematic attention to the breadth of these human rights violations. Speaking on behalf of a group of Latin American States, Argentina said that in light of these violations, the Council’s failure to act would send a negative signal that it is not able to provide protection, and called for this issue to be kept on the Council’s agenda. 

Fight against reprisals deserves highest political support

States should give the highest political support to the fight against reprisals, urged Hungary, expressing alarm at recent cases of arrest, detention or intimidation of individuals in relation to their work with UN mechanisms. Emphasising that reprisals undermine the entire UN system, Hungary regretted that the General Assembly had decided to defer consideration of the appointment of a UN-wide focal point. It expressed hope, however, that the African Group in New York might follow through on the recent initiative of the African Commission to appoint a focal point on reprisals, and would take the lead in ensuring that the UN-wide focal point would also be successfully appointed.

On-the-ground impact of special procedures must be deepened

The lack of follow-up on implementation of the recommendations of the special procedures was highlighted as a ‘key weakness’ of the system in a statement by Honduras on behalf of 38 States. Although aware of the resource limitations which might rule out follow-up country visits, it suggested cost-effective alternatives such as letters, or questionnaires to solicit information on implementation and challenges faced. States could also voluntarily share information on achievements and challenges following country visits. Pakistan, however, speaking on behalf of the ‘like-minded group’ of States, was more concerned that the special procedures should be governed ‘strictly’ by the Council’s institution-building package, as well as the code of conduct.




ISHR thanks Loterie Romande for supporting the Human Rights Defenders Advocacy Programme.

For more information, please visit our website: www.ishr.ch
or contact us: information@ishr.ch

ISHR would like to thank Irish Aid for its generosity in making this publication possible.