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Vacancies for independent United Nations experts of the Human Rights Council, with extensive professional experience in human rights


Those appointed serve in their personal capacities. They are not United Nations (UN) staff members, they are not based in UN offices in Geneva or at another UN location, and they do not receive salary or other financial compensation, except for travel expenses and daily subsistence allowance of “experts on mission”.


Vacancies to be filled during 2014

The “special procedures” of the Human Rights Council (HRC) are independent human rights experts with mandates to report and advise on human rights from a thematic or country-specific perspective. Their specific functions are defined in the HRC resolutions creating or extending their mandate.

Mandates can either be exercised by a “special rapporteur” or “independent expert” or a “working group”, composed of five members, one from each of the five UN regional groups (Africa, Asia-Pacific, Eastern Europe, Latin America and Caribbean, and Western Europe and Others). Where working groups are concerned, only candidates who are nationals of one of the countries of the regional group for which the vacancy is advertised may apply for such vacancies, i.e. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention – African Group, only nationals of African countries may apply. See underlined vacancies and list of UN member States by regional group.

The position of special procedures mandate-holder involves substantial time commitment, approximately three months per year, and includes examining, monitoring, advising and publicly reporting on either specific country situations (country mandates), or on thematic issues in all parts of the world (thematic mandates). Activities of special procedures also include: undertaking country visits, acting on individual cases and concerns of a broader, structural nature, conducting studies, and engaging in general advocacy activities. All special procedures report annually to the HRC. The majority of the mandates also reports to the General Assembly. The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights provides support to special procedures mandate-holders.

Find out more

HRC appointments at the March session (3-28 March 2014)

HRC appointments at the March session (3-28 March 2014)

  1. Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP)* [HRC res. 6/36] 
    Asia-Pacific Group
  2. Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (EMRIP)* [HRC res. 6/36]
    Western European and Others Group
  3. Independent expert on the effects of foreign debt and other related international financial obligations of States on the full enjoyment of human rights, particularly economic, social and cultural rights [HRC res. 16/14]
  4. Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights [HRC res. 17/13]
  5. Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Somalia [HRC res. 20/21]
  6. Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living and the right to non-discrimination in that context [HRC res. 15/8]
  7. Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences [HRC res. 15/2]
  8. Special Rapporteur on the right to food [HRC res. 22/9]
  9. Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography [HRC res. 16/12]
  10. Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples [HRC res. 15/14]
  11. Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar [HRC res. 22/14]
  12. Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967 [Commission on Human Rights res. 1993/2 A]
  13. Special Rapporteur on the situation on human rights defenders [HRC res. 16/5]
  14. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention [HRC res. 15/18] 
    African Group
  15. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention [HRC res. 15/18]
    Latin American and Caribbean Group
  16. Working Group Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances [HRC res. 16/16] 
    African Group
  17. Independent Expert on the enjoyment of all human rights by older persons [HRC res. 24/20]
  18. Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Central African Republic [HRC res. 24/34]
  19. Working Group on Discrimination Against Women in Law and in Practice [HRC res. 15/23]
    Latin American and Caribbean Group 
  20. 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 [HRC res. 15/12] Asia-Pacific Group

* EMRIP experts appointed in the same way as special procedures mandate holders

HRC appointments at the June session (10-27 June 2014)

  1. Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression [HRC res. 16/4]
  2. Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health [HRC res. 15/22]
  3. Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children [HRC res. 17/1]
  4. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention [HRC res. 15/18] 
    Asia-Pacific Group
  5. Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent [HRC res. 18/28] 
    African Group
  6. Special Rapporteur on the implications for human rights of the environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and wastes [HRC res. 18/11]

HRC appointments at the September session (8-26 September 2014)

  1. Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation [HRC res. 16/2]
  2. Working Group on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances [HRC res. 16/16] 
    Western European and Others Group
  3. Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent [HRC res. 18/28] 
    Asia-Pacific Group
  4. Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent [HRC res. 18/28]
    Eastern European Group
  5. Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities [HRC res. 26/20]
  6. Independent Expert on capacity-building and technical cooperation with Côte d’Ivoire in the field of human rights [HRC res. 26/32]
  7. Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in the Sudan [HRC res. 24/28]