HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL ESTABLISHES COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS IN SOUTH SUDAN

Geneva – The Human Rights Council this evening adopted 22 texts, establishing a Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan; extending mandates on human rights and countering terrorism, freedom of religion or belief, Syria, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea and Iran; and setting up future commemorations of the tenth anniversary of the Human Rights Council and the thirtieth anniversary of the Declaration on the Right to Development, among others.

Other resolutions related to the composition of staff of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights; the integrity of the judicial system; economic, social and cultural rights; rights of persons with disabilities in situations of risk and humanitarian emergencies; rights of the child – information and communications technologies and child sexual exploitation; human rights and the environment; adequate housing; the right to food; the effects of foreign debt and other related international financial obligations of States on the full enjoyment of all human rights, particularly economic, social and cultural rights; the promotion of the enjoyment of the cultural rights of everyone and respect for cultural diversity; the rights of persons belonging to national or ethnic, religious and linguistic minorities; the role of good governance in the promotion and protection of human rights; the right to work; and the commencement of the third cycle of the Universal Periodic Review.

In a resolution on the situation of human rights in South Sudan, adopted without a vote, the Council decided to establish a Commission on Human Rights in South Sudan, composed of three members for a period of one year, with the mandate to, inter alia, monitor and report on the situation of human rights in South Sudan and make recommendations for its improvement, and requested the Commission to present a comprehensive written report, in an interactive dialogue, to the Human Rights Council at its thirty-fourth session.

In a resolution on the human rights situation in Syria, adopted by a vote of 27 in favour, six against, and 14 abstentions, the Council decided to extend for one year the mandate of the Commission of Inquiry on Syria, demanded that all parties take all appropriate steps to protect civilians and facilitate access of the United Nations and humanitarian actors; and recommended that the General Assembly submit all reports of the Commission of Inquiry to the Security Council for appropriate action.

In a resolution on the situation of human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, adopted without a vote, the Council extended the mandate of the Special Rapporteur of the situation of human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea for a period of one year, and requested the High Commissioner for Human Rights to designate, for a period of six months, a maximum of two existing independent experts in support of the work of the Special Rapporteur to focus on issues of accountability.

In a resolution on the situation of human rights in Iran, adopted by a vote of 20 in favour, 15 against and 11 abstentions, the Council decided to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Iran for a further period of one year, and called upon the Government of Iran to cooperate fully with the Special Rapporteur and to permit access to visit the country.

In a resolution on freedom of religion or belief, adopted without a vote, the Council decided to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur for a further period of three years and urged all Governments to cooperate fully with the Special Rapporteur.

The Council decided without a vote to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism for a period of three years, and requested all Governments to cooperate fully with this mandate.

The Council decided in a resolution adopted without a vote to convene, on the first day of its thirty-second session, a high-level panel discussion on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Human Rights Council, focusing on its achievements and challenges.

In a resolution adopted by a vote of 34 in favour, none against and 13 abstentions, the Council decided to convene, at its thirty-second session, a panel discussion on the promotion and protection of the right to development as part of the celebrations of the thirtieth anniversary of the Declaration on the Right to Development.

Introducing draft texts were Cuba, Russian Federation, Switzerland, Mexico, Iran, Portugal, New Zealand, Netherlands on behalf of the European Union, Uruguay on behalf of the Group of Latin American and Caribbean Countries, Slovenia, Costa Rica, Maldives, Finland, Austria, Poland,  Bolivia, Egypt, Greece, United Kingdom, Japan, Sweden,  Albania, and Paraguay.

Speaking in general comments were Venezuela, Russian Federation on behalf of the Like-Minded Group of Countries, South Africa, Bolivia, United Kingdom, Bolivia, Mexico, Indonesia, Russian Federation, Netherlands on behalf of the European Union, Switzerland, Ecuador, China and Venezuela.

Speaking in explanation of the vote before or after the vote were Netherlands on behalf of the European Union, Mexico, United Kingdom, Cuba, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Algeria, Viet Nam, China, Russian Federation, Bangladesh, Ecuador and Paraguay.

Syria, Iran and South Sudan spoke as concerned countries.  Democratic People’s Republic of Korea was not present in the room to speak as a concerned country.

The Human Rights Council will reconvene at 9 a.m. on Thursday, 24 March to continue taking action on draft resolutions and decisions before it concludes its thirty-first session.

Advertisements