During the 48th session of the Human Rights Council, civil society expressed concern and condemnation about an anti LGBTI bill in Ghana, while the second joint government statement on the rights of intersex persons was delivered on behalf of 52 States.
For a Chinese version of the factsheets updated in November 2018, please click here.
ISHR and ILGA World have looked through the work of 39 UN Special Procedures over the last eight years to compile factsheets listing the references and recommendations made by these experts regarding LGBTI persons, sexual orientation, sex characteristics, gender identity and expression.
Focusing on the Special Procedures that have made the most regular and in-depth references to issues affecting LGBTI persons, the factsheets examine all thematic reports, reports arising from country visits, and communications sent to different States between January 2011 and November 2019. Find out more about the trends over the past year here.
During this period, 37 Special Procedures have made SOGIESC references in over 400 country visits, thematic reports and communications. In both 2018 and 2019, almost every second report contained some reference to SOGIESC. However, the level of detail and analysis, as well as which mandates do or do not engage with SOGIESC issues regularly, show that there are still oppportunities for LGBTI defenders to strengthen this work.
In addition, since 2016, the Independent Expert on SOGI has played a vital role in adding to the amount and analytical depth of the SOGIESC references. So far, according to the information published on the OHCHR website, the mandate holders have conducted 4 country visits, sent 46 communications and prepared 6 thematic reports exclusively centred on SOGIESC.
Explore our infographics and fact sheets below, and later this year we will also present a more detailed analysis of SOGIESC references, as well as suggestions for future improvements and LGBTI defenders’ engagement with this part of the UN system.
Read this article to find out more about the efforts of Special Procedures to push for better protection of the human rights of LGBTI persons over the last year.
- Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity
- Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders
- Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression
- Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association
- Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences
- Working Group on the issue of discrimination against women in law and practice
- Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment of punishment
- Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions
- Working Group on arbitrary detention
- Working Group on enforced or involuntary disappearances
- Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief
- Special Rapporteur on the human rights to safe drinking water and sanitation
- Special Rapporteur in the field of cultural rights
- Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health
- Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights
- Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, and on the right to non-discrimination in this context
- Special Rapporteur on the right to education
- Working Group on people of African descent
- Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance
- Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities
- Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants
- Special Rapporteur on minority issues
- Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples
- Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons
- Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers
- Special Rapporteur on the right to privacy
- Special Rapporteur on the sale and sexual exploitation of children
- Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences
- Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children
- Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises
- Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism
- Special Rapporteur on the human rights of internally displaced persons
- Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence
- Special Rapporteur on the right to development
- Independent Expert on the enjoyment of human rights by persons with albinism
- Special rapporteur on the right to food
- Working group on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination
The experts on leprosy and environment have not yet included any references to LGBTI persons or issues related to sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, or sex characteristics.
Photo credit: Common Wikimedia Ludovic Bertron
LGBTQ communities in Namibia and those defending their rights remain targeted, suffering various forms of discrimination, stigmatisation and violence. It is time for the Namibian government to take action and decriminalise same-sex sexual relations, revise laws discriminating against, and take measures to address violence in, LGBT communities.
This week in an online event, 10 candidate States publicly spoke to an audience of around 200 people on their pledges as incoming Human Rights Council members for 2022 – 2024. They also faced questions on pressing human rights issues from both States and civil society organisations.
In the first case on violence against trans people heard by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the Court held Honduras responsible for the transfemicide of human rights defender Vicky Hernández.
ISHR, along with 23 organisations, highlight attacks and targeting of trans and gender diverse defenders; the Independent Expert on SOGI examines the construction of gender in international law, a Group of Friends of the mandate of the Independent Expert is formed; and 27 States call on the Council to urgently protect the human rights of trans people.
10 years after the first SOGI resolution was passed at the Council, 27 States launch the Group of Friends of the mandate of the UN Independent Expert on protection against violence and discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Tess McEvoy from ISHR and Gabriel Galil from ILGA World tell the story.
It's difficult to encapsulate such a complex year in a word, but "interconnected" is one that comes to mind when reflecting on 2020. We are proud to have remained deeply interconnected with defenders and to have supported, protected and amplified their work at the national, regional and international levels. With them, the "essential workers" of our times, we strive for a 2021 full of freedom, equality, dignity and justice.
Operating in a context of persistent insecurity and aggravated by the Covid19 crisis, human rights defenders in Burkina Faso are exposed to many risks. The law on the protection of defenders and its implementing decree were adopted in 2018, but its implementation and use remain a challenge for defenders.
In a context where Egyptian police routinely prosecute and arrest LGBTIQ+ people by using fabricated charges such as “immorality”, “incitement to immorality”, “misuse of social media” and “belonging to terrorist groups”, ISHR joined human rights organisations in calling on the Egyptian government to immediately stop arresting or detaining individuals based on their sexual orientation or gender identity. No one should face discrimination, intimidation or imprisonment because of their sexual orientation or gender identity; and to ensure a safe and enabling environment for civil society organisations to work freely to serve this community.
According to Articles 23 (3) and 72 of the Rules of Procedure of the African Commission on Human and Peoples' Rights, each Commissioner must present an activity report detailing activities undertaken in relation to their mandates. Following the presentation of the report of the Special Rapporteur on human rights defenders in Africa, ISHR delivered a statement highlighting the violations and reprisals faced by human rights defenders on the continent.
Niger is one of the few States in Africa to fulfill its reporting obligations to the African Commission on time. In that regard, the Republic of Niger, after its previous review in 2017, submitted its 15th Periodic Reports covering the period 2017-2019. The report presents the progress made by the country regarding the state of human rights in Niger.
The Covid-19 pandemic has had a considerable impact on human rights and fundamental freedoms in general. However, many countries in Central and West Africa had to hold elections during the pandemic period. How were the elections organised during this period and what was the impact of Covid-19 on the conduct of the elections?