ICJ calls for human rights-based approach in countering terrorism at UN Human Rights Council

The ICJ issued a statement today on the occasion of an interactive dialogue with the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights while countering terrorism on the need for a human rights-based approach for countering terrorism.

The ICJ was not able to read the statement during the interactive dialogue due to the limited time provided for NGO statements.


The statement was as follows:

“Madam President,

The ICJ welcomes the attention given by the Special Rapporteur to the human rights impact of counterterrorism policies on the rights of women and girls and the need to incorporate a gender perspective into counter-terrorism policy and law in all areas (See, para. 39b, UN Doc. A/HRC/46/36).

We share the Special Rapporteur’s concern that the critical State obligation to promote economic, social and cultural rights should not be absorbed into a new, generalized, non-rights based category of “economic effects of terrorism (para. 37.)  The emphasis must remain squarely on preventing and redressing violations and abuses against victims (para. 36).

We agree with the Special Rapporteur that human rights obligations and counterterrorism are directed at the State and that care must be taken to avoid the blurring of lines between counterterrorism and international humanitarian law (para. 39e). We concur that States must address the rule of law and human rights effects of misuse of sanctions and listing processes to target civil society and persons exercising rights protected by international law.

The ICJ therefore calls on the Council to maintain in this matter a human rights-based approach to victims of terrorism, as stressed by the Special Rapporteur.

Thank you.”



Massimo Frigo, ICJ UN Representative, e: massimo.frigo(a)icj.org, t: +41797499949

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