Improving the effectiveness of UN human rights experts

The ICJ today joined other NGOs in an oral statement to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, highlighting ongoing challenges faced by independent UN human rights experts, supporting the process the experts have established to make their own work effective, and calling for related issues of funding and non-cooperation of States to be addressed.

The statement was delivered on behalf of the group of NGOs by Amnesty International and read as follows:

“We note the concerns in the Declaration of the Special Procedures’ mandate holders at the Annual Meeting 2019 and share their concern about the global retrenchment against the values and obligations embedded in international human rights law and the challenges they spell out with regard to non-cooperation.

We also express appreciation[1] for the process set in place by the Special Procedures Coordination Committee to discuss ways in which the work can be strengthened including by seeking input from a wide range of stakeholders. This process presents the most appropriate way to ensure the effectiveness of the Special Procedures in protecting and promoting human rights, and to discuss ways to strengthen cooperation and address situations where there may be concerns regarding the actions of individual mandate holders.

We hope that this process will also provide an opportunity to discuss issues of chronic underfunding, non-cooperation of States with the Special Procedures, acts of reprisal and intimidation against human rights defenders and ad hominem attacks against mandate holders and how to make non-cooperation including selective cooperation by states more costly.”

(Partial) list of signatories:

  • Amnesty International
  • Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies
  • Center for Reproductive Rights
  • Child Rights Connect
  • CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation
  • Colombian Commission of Jurists
  • Defence for Children International
  • Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)
  • Geneva for Human Rights
  • ILGA World
  • International Bar Association’s Human Rights Institute
  • International Commission of Jurists
  • International Movement against All Forms of Discrimination and Racism (IMADR)
  • International Service of Human Rights
  • Peace Brigades International
  • Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)
  • World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT)

[1] Civil society statement on efforts to strengthen and increase effectiveness of the United Nations Special Procedures ,

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