Yesterday, during the 24th session of the UN Human Rights Council, the ICJ and TRIAL (Swiss Association against Impunity) jointly held a parallel event on promoting accountability through human rights mechanisms in Geneva.
The event was co-sponsored by the Permanent Missions of Switzerland, Estonia and Costa Rica to the United Nations Office at Geneva.
A corresponding report produced by ICJ and TRIAL was also launched at this event in two versions, one aimed at civil society and another aimed at States.
Panellists at this event included Ian Seiderman of the ICJ, Gabriella Citroni of TRIAL and Theo van Boven, former Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and ICJ Honorary Commissioner.
Mona Rishmawi of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) chaired the event.
The main topic of this event was the ICJ-TRIAL report, which reviews the legal framework for promoting accountability and suggests possible action by civil society and States to engage with the human rights mechanisms in Geneva to better promote and achieve accountability for human rights violations.
The role of national mechanisms, such as national human rights institutions, working in cooperation with the UN mechanisms was also highlighted.
The report focuses specifically on the Human Rights Council and its subsidiary bodies, such as the Universal Periodic Review and the special procedures mechanisms.
OHCHR’s role was further emphasised in regards to sharing best practices as well as ensuring follow-up to issues of accountability as they come to the attention to the UN.