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International Solidarity: UN expert launches study mission on Brazil’s 'Solidarity Diplomacy'

GENEVA (21 June 2012) – United Nations Independent Expert, Virginia Dandan, will undertake an official visit to Brazil from 25 to 29 June 2012 to study the country’s experiences on the implementation of the so-called 'Solidarity Diplomacy' built upon Brazil’s commitment to human rights and social development.

“Brazil’s international cooperation initiatives are leading to ground-breaking South-South and Triangular Cooperation frameworks in areas such as the fight against hunger, agriculture, education and health among others,” Ms. Dandan said. “These experiences are contributing to a new model in international development cooperation and solidarity.”

This is the first country mission by the Independent Expert on international solidarity designated by the UN Human Rights Council to draft a declaration on the Right of Individuals and Peoples to International Solidarity.

“Brazil’s efforts in the areas of technology transfer and capacity building in least developed countries, as well as in cultural, scientific and educational exchange and scholarship programmes, have significantly contributed to the promotion of higher standards of living,” the rights expert noted. “I expect to learn about the successes achieved as well as the challenges the country has faced and continues to face, in implementing its duty of international cooperation.”

During her visit, Ms. Dandan will meet with national authorities and civil society representatives, including non-governmental organizations. The Independent Expert will present the country study visit’s results to a forthcoming session of the UN Human Rights Council in September.

Rio+20: Ms. Dandan is currently in Brazil attending the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro taking part in a series of consultations, and also reminding world leaders of their duty to cooperate in the global partnership for development respectful of all human rights.

“We are all in this project together,” Ms. Dandan stressed in her message* to Rio+20. “It is not about charity but rather, it is the expression of our mutual responsibility for each other as members of one human family sharing one small planet, our only home.”

“States must wake up from the illusion that each one has a stake to protect that is separate from that of another. What happens to one of us happens to all of us. We win or we lose, together,” the expert on international solidarity said on Monday during a meeting of civil society organisations held at the Peoples’ Summit, in Rio de Janeiro.

(*) “It is not about charity” - Check the expert’s message: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=12249&LangID=E

ENDS

Ms. Virginia Dandan is an internationally recognized specialist in economic, social and cultural rights serving as the Chairperson of the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Right from 1999 to 2007 and a member from 1990 to 2010. Ms. Dandan retired as professor of the University of the Philippines, College of Fine Arts in 2009 where she also served as a Dean from 2001 to 2006. She was appointed Independent Expert on human Rights and International Solidarity by the United Nations Human Rights Council in June 2011. She is independent from any government or organization and serves in her individual capacity. The mandate covers all countries. Learn more, log on to: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Issues/Solidarity/Pages/IESolidarityIndex.aspx

OHCHR Country Page – Brazil: http://www.ohchr.org/EN/countries/LACRegion/Pages/BRIndex.aspx

For more information and media requests, please contact:
In Geneva (before the visit): Adriano José Timossi (+41 22 928 9362 / +41 77 430 9873/ atimossi@ohchr.org) or write to iesolidarity@ohchr.org.
In Brasília (during the visit): Ms. Juliana de Moura Gomes, Division on Human Rights, Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Itamaraty +55 61 3411 8648/ juliana.gomes@itamaraty.gov.br)

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts:
Xabier Celaya, UN Human Rights – Media Unit (+ 41 22 917 9383 / xcelaya@ohchr.org)

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