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Draft General Guidelines on Foreign Debt and Human Rights

In its resolution adopted in April 2004, the Commission on Human Rights (the predecessor to the Human Rights Council) requested the independent expert to draft general guidelines to be followed by States and by private and public, national and international financial institutions in the decision-making and execution of debt repayments and structural reform programmes, including those arising from foreign debt relief, to ensure that compliance with the commitments derived from foreign debt will not undermine the obligations for the realization of fundamental economic, social and cultural rights, as provided for in the international human rights instruments. The former Independent Expert, Mr. Bernards Mudho, undertook consultations to develop guidelines and presented draft general guidelines to the Human Rights Council in March 2008.

In its resolution 11/5 of June 2009 and its decision 12/119 of September 2009, the Council requested the Independent Expert to hold regional stakeholder consultations on the draft general guidelines on foreign debt and human rights, with the support of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

The Independent Expert welcomes comments and suggestions from all stakeholders on the draft general guidelines. Submissions may be sent to: ieforeigndebt@ohchr.org.