Follow up report on country missions
The Special Rapporteur's report to the twentieth session of the Human Rights Council (June 2012) focused on follow-up to country missions since the Special Rapporteur’s appointment in 2008. The report presents an assessment of the progress made by and the challenges remaining in the countries that the Special Rapporteur has visited since her appointment: Ecuador (November 2008), Zambia (August 2009), Bangladesh (December 2009), Viet Nam (August 2010) and Ireland (January 2011). In this report, the Special Rapporteur also analyses the challenges confronted by special procedure mandate holders in follow-up efforts.
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An important debate on improving follow-up on States' reactions to the recommendations and observations of human rights mechanisms is ongoing. Currently, there is no institutionalized mechanism at the international level through which the impact of special procedures' recommendations can be measured. Several special procedures have developed a systematic method to assess the impact of country visits recommendations, while others have made these assessments on a less systematic basis. For example, some have conducted follow-up visits to previous visits under their mandate to the same country. Those visits have been valuable in highlighting ongoing human rights concerns and assessing the implementation of recommendations. Others have formulated follow-up reports on the basis of information requested from the States concerned, national human rights institutions (NHRIs) and civil society organizations. However, financial and human resource constraints prevent most mandate holders from engaging in repeated visits to States, or conducting other follow-up.
In order to carry out the follow-up initiative, the Special Rapporteur employed the more feasible alternative of requesting States and other stakeholders to provide information regarding her recommendations following her country visits. To facilitate the assessment, the Special Rapporteur sent detailed country-specific questionnaires to the Governments of Ecuador, Zambia, Bangladesh, Viet Nam and Ireland requesting specific information about progress and challenges in the implementation of her recommendations.