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Universal Periodic Review – MEDIA BRIEF

Thursday, 7 May 2015 (Morning)

(Disclaimer: The following brief is not an official record, provides a brief factual summary of the UPR Working Group meeting with the State under review, and does not cover all points addressed)

State under review

Andorra
Represented by 7 member delegation headed by Gilbert Saboya Sunyé, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Andorra.

Documents

To access national report, compilation of UN information, and summary of stakeholders’ information, visit the Andorra page on UPR website.

Troika *

Ethiopia, Portugal, Qatar.

Opening statement by State under review

Few points raised in the  opening statement of State under review:
(See full statement on Andorra page on UPR Extranet **)

  • Since 1993 Andorra has ratified over 200 international treaties and was a member of 23 international organisations, and between September 2010 and January 2015, the Government has signed or ratified 15 new treaties which were also reflected in the legislation of the country;
  • A major legislative reform was the Law on Foreign Investment in June 2012, which has enabled any resident in Andorra, regardless of nationality, to be a shareholder of an Andorran company and to exercise unrestricted economic activity in the country;
  • The legislative amendment to the immigration law in May 2012 enabled an integration of all forms of residence;
  • In March 2013 during the 57th session of the Commission on the Status of Women, Andorra co-organized a side event jointly with France intended to encourage States to ratify the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combatting violence against women and domestic violence;
  • Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon extended an invitation to Andorra in September 2013 to join the group of countries comprising the “Champions Global Education First Initiative”, which called for achieving universal primary education, improving the quality of education and the promotion of global citizenship;
  • Since 2002, there was a law aimed at upholding and respecting the rights of persons with disabilities and further to a previous UPR recommendation the State ratified the CRPD as well as its optional protocol;
  • The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Andorra has spent about 35% of its development aid to international cooperation programs whose objectives were to improve the lives of children;
  • The severe economic crisis experienced by the country in 2008 has caused a decline in economic activity and a decline in population; the Government undertook a series of policies to diversify the economy and encourage job creation in the country, including for young people;
  • The Government was taking steps to better promote the rights of women, including through awareness campaigns and workshops for youth to enhance awareness of gender stereotypes and reduce discrimination and violence;
  • With regard to corporal punishment, the last reform of the Penal Code in December 2014 has duly criminalised all acts of corporal punishment;
  • In its fight against gender violence, Andorra was the tenth State to ratify the Council of Europe Convention on preventing and combatting violence against women and domestic violence, which entered into force on 1 August 2014;
  • The Parliament adopted on 15 January 2015, a law for the eradication of violence against women and domestic violence which will lead to the creation of the National Commission for the Prevention of Violence Against Women and Domestic

Participants

In total 39 States participated in the dialogue:  19 HRC members and 20 observers  (Statements available on Andorra page on UPR Extranet).

Positive achievements

Positive achievements noted by delegations included, among others:

  • The adoption of the Act on the Elimination of Gender-based and domestic violence, establishing a National Commission for the Prevention of Gender-based and Domestic Violence;
  • The ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and its Optional Protocol;
  • The  amendments to the Criminal Code, creating new offences within the crime of trafficking for purposes such as slavery and sexual exploitation and organ harvesting;
  • The adoption of legislation improving equality between man and women with regard to working conditions and remuneration;
  • Steps taken to advance the promotion of the rights of children and the Penal Code amendments prohibiting corporal punishment;
  • The improvement of the rights of migrants, refugees and asylum seekers;

Issues and Questions

Issues and questions raised by the Working Group included, among others:

  • Human trafficking;
  • The persistence of discrimination against women and the significant equality and wage gap in the labour market;
  • Domestic violence;
  • The continued criminalization of abortion;
  • Incidents of racial intolerance and hate crimes;
  • Issues linked to legislation on migrants, asylum seekers and refugees

Recommendations

States participating in the dialogue posed a series of recommendations to Andorra.  These pertained to the following issues, among others

  • To establish an independent national institution, in line with the Paris Principles;
  • To continue efforts in combating violence against women;
  • To adopt a national plan against human trafficking and to provide assistance to victims;
  • To amend legislation to decriminalize abortion under certain circumstances, such as pregnancies that are the result of rape;
  • To raise the minimum age of marriage from 14 to 18;
  • To enact legislation on asylum seekers, refugees and policies with regard to migrants consistent with international standards;
  • To adopt legislation providing for the right to collective bargaining and to recognize the right to strike;
  • To strengthen legislation on racism and intolerance and establish institutions at national level to combat these manifestations and to thoroughly investigate cases of hate crimes and prosecute those responsible;
  • To prohibit corporal punishment against children;
  • To continue efforts in promoting and protecting the rights of persons with disabilities;
  • To continue efforts to achieve gender equality and eliminate stereotypes about women;
  • Ratification of human rights instruments: the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture; the Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; the Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers; the Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearances; the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities; ILO Convention 189 on Domestic Workers; ILO Convention 100 on Equal Remuneration; the UNESCO Convention against Discrimination in Education; the 1951 Refugee Convention and the 1967 Protocol thereto; and ILO Convention 138 on Minimum Age.

Adoption of report of Working Group

The adoption of the report of the UPR Working Group on Andorra is scheduled to take place on Tuesday, 12 May 2015.

*The troikas are a group of three States selected through a drawing of lots who serve as rapporteurs and who are charged with preparing the report of the Working Group on the country review with the involvement of the State under review and assistance from the OHCHR.

** For access to the UPR Extranet, please fill out the following form to receive a username and password

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Rolando Gómez, Public Information Officer, OHCHR, + 41(0)22 917 9711, rgomez@ohchr.org
Cédric Sapey, Public Information Officer, OHCHR, + 41(0)22 917 9695, csapey@ohchr.org

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