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Human Rights Council panel discussion on human rights and climate change

In its resolution 10/4 (25 March 2009), the Human Rights Council decided to: "hold a panel discussion on the relationship between climate change and human rights at its eleventh session in order to contribute to the realization of the goals set out in the Bali Action Plan and to invite all relevant stakeholders to participate therein". The panel discussion was held in Geneva on 15 June 2009.

The topic of the panel was: "The implications of climate change for the full enjoyment of human rights, especially for members of vulnerable population groups, and the relevance of this for climate change policy". The main objectives of the panel were:

To improve understanding of the implications of climate change (as well as climate change response measures) for the full enjoyment of human rights, especially among vulnerable population groups.

To discuss the implications of this understanding for climate change policy-making. How can the international community best protect those rights affected by climate change-related impacts and those affected by climate change response measures?

To better understand the implications of climate change and related environmental degradation for human rights law and mechanisms.

Opening remarks by representatives of OHCHR and the UNFCCC Secretariat and presentations by expert panelists were followed by an interactive discussion with States and other stakeholders (see concept note of the panel discussion below). The panel discussion can be viewed on webcast (15 June 2009, 3:00-6:00 pm)

In implementation of Human Rights Council resolution 10/4, OHCHR prepared a summary of the panel discussion (see below). As requested by the Human Rights Council, the summary, together with the study of OHCHR on the relationship between climate change and human rights (A/HRC/10/61), will be made available to the Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP15) for its consideration.

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