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HRC55: Key issues on agenda of March 2024 session

The 55th UN Human Rights Council session will discuss the protection of human rights defenders, freedom of religion, human rights while countering terrorism, and rights to food and housing. It will also address grave human rights issues in countries like Sudan, Nicaragua, Venezuela, China, Syria, South Sudan, Iran, North Korea, Myanmar, Eritrea, and the Palestinian territories/Israel, amongst others.

Director’s update: Human rights at the crossroads

As the year end looms, ISHR executive director Phil Lynch shares reflections on the context in which we operate, the importance of applying a principled, non-discriminatory approach to human rights, and the crucial work of defenders.

ACHPR77: A declaration to protect defenders in Africa

On 25th October, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (‘the African Commission’) held a panel to discuss the draft African Declaration on the promotion of the role of human rights defenders and their protection in Africa.

DRC adopts national law to protect, promote rights of defenders

The DRC has become the fifth country in Africa and the first in Central Africa to adopt a legal instrument for the promotion and protection of human rights defenders. Though some provisions are contrary to international protection standards, if effectively implemented, this new law should help create an enabling working environment for defenders.

Protection mechanism crucial to implementation of law on defenders in Niger

On 15 June 2022, the National Assembly of Niger passed a law on the rights and duties of human rights defenders. This makes Niger the fourth African country to adopt such a law. However, for the law to produce the desired effects, it must be widely known and understood by all stakeholders. The establishment of an independent and inclusive protection mechanism will ensure the full implementation of the law.

HRC52: ISHR urges HRC to take action on Burkina Faso, Colombia, El Salvador and Saudi Arabia

On 22 and 23 March 2023, the Human Rights Council held a general debate on human rights situations requiring the Council’s attention. States and NGOs spoke, and the High Commissioner spoke on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. They drew the Council’s attention to a number of country situations of concern. ISHR delivered a statement, highlighting the human rights situation in four countries: Burkina Faso, Colombia, El Salvador, and Saudi Arabia.