A celebration and commitment towards greater protection of human rights defenders
Following substantial negotiations, UN Member States once again found common ground and reiterated their commitment to providing a safe and enabling environment for human rights defenders in the Third Committee's adoption of this biennial resolution by consensus.
ISHR and a coalition of NGOs organised an event on Capitol Hill to celebrate human rights defenders and urge the international community to stand with and support defenders worldwide.
On 5 October, State representatives, civil society organisations, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the Expert Mechanism to Advance Racial Justice and Equality in the Context of Law Enforcement (EMLER) came together to discuss the worldwide situation of racism against Africans and People of African Descent.
UN experts presented States at the Human Rights Council with two reports looking at strategies to tackle racially-motivated violence in law enforcement. They recommended stricter and more transparent oversight frameworks for officials as well as greater use of community-led policing.
The 54th session of the UN Human Rights Council (11 Sep - 13 Oct) will consider issues including reprisals, arbitrary detention, systemic racism, enforced disappearances, water and sanitation, and the rights of Indigenous peoples and people of African descent. It will also present an opportunity to address grave situations in over a dozen States. Here’s an overview of some of the key issues on the agenda.
The Guatemalan government rejects 40% of recommendations at crucial UN human rights review. Amidst a delicate electoral context, NGOs urge the government to cooperate in good faith with UN bodies and implement key recommendations to address attacks against human rights defenders, justice officials, and discrimination against Indigenous Peoples, women, and LGBTIQ+ persons.
After a two-month online course and over ten intense days in-person in Geneva, sixteen dedicated human rights defenders participating in ISHR’s 2023 Human Rights Defender Advocacy Programme (HRDAP23) exchanged experiences, strengthened their skills, put them into practice, and built a network of allies in Geneva and across the globe.
Over a dozen organisations share reflections on the key outcomes of the 53rd session of the UN Human Rights Council, as well as the missed opportunities to address key issues and situations. A shortened version was delivered at the Council. Full written version below.
Camila Zuluaga is an international advocacy lawyer at the Colombian Commission of Jurists (CCJ). She spoke to ISHR about her history of activism and hope for Colombia, which is about working to make a safer country for human rights defenders.