How we make a difference 2016
Nauru’s migrant dead end
Over 1,100 migrants, including refugees, who have fled persecution in their home countries for a brighter future in Australia, are now living in offshore camps and refugee settlements on Nauru with little hope for relocation to another country.
High Commissioner Zeid Hails Peace Accord in Colombia
The UN Human Rights Office pledges "full and enthusiastic" support for swift implementation – building on years of strong, critical and respectful cooperation with authorities and civil society across the country.
An antidote against unjust societies
Five years after the adoption of the UN Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training, have we realized the transformative power of human rights education? Experts from around the globe at the Human Rights Council discuss.
In the best interest of migrant children
The prohibition of the detention of migrant children, unaccompanied or with their family members, should be a critical point of discussion at the upcoming UN Summit for Migrants and Refugees, says UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants, François Crépeau.
Human trafficking risks in the context of migration
UN Special Rapporteur trafficking in persons, Maria Grazia Giammarinaro, says that the UN Summit for Refugees and Migrants should address human trafficking in the context of migration, an issue often overlooked.
Zeid's Global Human Rights Update
Addressing the 33rd session of the Human Rights Council, the High Commissioner focused on trends that increasingly undermine the work of the United Nations – including attempts to block the scrutiny of his Office.
Thirteen civilian casualties a day in Yemen conflict
A new UN Human Rights Office report describes Yemen as a country at risk of a systemic collapse. Because of the lingering conflict, at least three million people have had their livelihood destroyed and have been forced to flee their homes in search of safety.
Working for indigenous recognition in French Guyana
Aulagéa Therese believes one of the biggest challenges facing his people is a lack of national recognition. A member of the Kali’na people in French Guyana, Therese was selected as one of the 2016 UN Human Rights Office Indigenous Fellows.
Starting young to help her community
“I started being an activist by the time I was in high school,” said Milka Chepkorir Kuto, a member of the Sengwer indigenous people of Kenya. Kuto was in Geneva to obtain training in human rights and advocacy as one of the 2016 UN Human Rights Office Indigenous Fellows.
Towards an in-depth justice reform in Guatemala
Guatemala has embarked in an unprecedented justice reform. The objective: guarantee a fully independent and effective judiciary, and preserve the achievements in the fight against corruption and impunity.
“Take action! Being silent is dangerous.”
Charlene Apok believes there are many obstacles facing indigenous peoples when they try to advocate for their rights at an international level. “This system was not made for us,” she said. Apok, a member of the Iñupiaq tribe in the USA, was a recent UN Human Rights Office Indigenous Fellow.
Activists focus on health as a human right for indigenous peoples
Indigenous communities across the globe are facing a health care crisis, where the lack of access to health care has resulted in a rise in illnesses and even suicides. “It’s an epidemic facing so many indigenous communities,” said Dr. Hannah McGlade, Senior Indigenous Fellow for the UN Human Rights Office.
Zeid's visit to DRC
High Commissioner Zeid has just ended a four-day visit to the Democratic Republic of the Congo
Muslim community thriving in Moldova
The Human Rights Council, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, played a major role in the Moldovan registration of the Islamic League of Moldova in 2011. Today, Moldovan Muslims can practice their religion without fear.
“We don’t need more speeches, we need justice”
“It is time for the world to see our wounds,” said Nadia Murad, Yazidi activist. Murad, who escaped slavery from ISIS, was speaking during the event “They came to Destroy: ISIS Crimes Against the Yazidis” which took place during the Human Rights Council.
Panel: Sports natural conduit to promote human rights
“I have been an athlete since I was five-years-old, and I have played on the Greek Olympic water polo team for 15 years,” said Stavroula Kozompoli, an Olympic silver medallist. “I strongly believe that Olympic values and the sport (in general) can impact human rights and have a great positive influence.”
Too long a wait for peace and justice - Commission of Inquiry
The Commission of Inquiry on Syria urges parties to commit to a political solution to the conflict, and following a finding that ISIS is committing genocide in Syria, again calls upon the UN Security Council to refer the situation to international criminal justice.
Taking stock of the Human Rights Council at 10
Former presidents assess a decade of the Human Rights Council during a discussion on the 10th Anniversary of the Human Rights Council. The event was moderated by UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kate Gilmore.
Gun control in USA
“The ready availability of guns leaves little space between murderous impulses and actions that result in death," High Commissioner Zeid says, urging robust gun control.
United Nations inquiry finds crimes against humanity in Eritrea
Crimes against humanity have been committed in a widespread and systematic manner in Eritrean detention facilities, military training camps and other locations across the country over the past 25 years, according to a new report by the UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea.
Fear in Eritrea
A new report released by the UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea features chilling accounts of human rights violations that amount to crimes against humanity.
Human rights need protection during humanitarian crises
In Liberia the UN Human Rights Office led an initiative to ensure people’s rights were protected during the Ebola crisis. This initiative and the cross-cutting work of the Office during humanitarian crises will be showcased at the World Humanitarian Summit, taking place from 23-24 May in Istanbul, Turkey.
Why we fight: campaigning for LGBT Equality
To bring attention to the fight against discrimination against gay, lesbian, bisexual, trans and intersex people across the world, the United Nations Human Rights Office has commissioned “Why we Fight” a film showcasing why people choose to stand up against LGBT discrimination.
Excision remains firmly anchored in the traditions of 29 countries in Africa and the Middle East.
Foreign fighters: emerging challenge for human rights
With an estimated 30,000 people fighting in armed conflicts outside their country of residence, States need guidance and information on how to deal with this emerging trend and its implications for communities.
Measuring human rights to support sustainable development
Traditional data collection has seldom been able to support inequality reduction policies to benefit the most vulnerable. A human rights-based approach to data can help States attain the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.
From horror to healing
A young Syrian girl who was able to deal with the traumatizing physical and psychological effects of torture is one of the many stories featured in a new brochure produced by the UN Fund for Victims of Torture.
Making DPRK accountable for human rights violations
In his last report to the Human Rights Council, Marzuki Darusman, Special Rapporteur on the situation of the human rights in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, called for the creation of an expert panel to help ensure accountability for crimes against humanity committed in the country.
Homelessness: surviving at the peripheries
Homelessness is not a personal failure but the consequence of the systemic denial of the rights of homeless people, says UN expert on the right to adequate housing, Leilani Farha.
UN Anti-racism expert answers questions in live online discussion
Anti-racial discrimination champion and member of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) Gay McDougall will take questions on how to make the fight against racial discrimination more relevant worldwide, during a live online discussion on social networking platform Reddit.
Paying the price for climate change in human health
After recounting the devastating impacts of climate change on health during a Human Rights Council event, Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kate Gilmore called for urgent action. “We know that change is urgent, necessary, possible and for our children’s children’s sake, we must make change doable.”
Nigeria creates a military Human Rights Desk
The creation of a Human Rights Desk by the Nigerian army, and a review of the forces’ Code of conduct and Rules of Engagement, represent an unprecedented breakthrough.
Children draw rights and freedoms
An 11-year-old from Samoa and a 15-year-old from Pakistan are the global winners of the UN Human Rights Office poster contest to design a poster for the 50th Anniversary of the Human Rights Covenants campaign.
Changing our subconscious maps the way to equality
Sexism is deeply rooted in our unconscious, said Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Kate Gilmore. “We grow up with these internal maps that lead to a bias that can be said to be unconscious. We have to own our responsibility to confront and dismantle those toxic maps.”
International Women's Day 2016
Improving gender parity is the focus for this year's International Women's Day which has the theme "Planet 50-50 by 2030: step it up for gender equality."
Voices of despair in Libya
A new UN Human Rights Office report on Libya documents the chilling stories of victims and witnesses which describe widespread human rights violations and abuses committed by both State and non-State actors.
Human rights goes digital in Tajikistan
For the first time, people in Tajikistan are now able to gain access to vital human rights information with a new website launched by the Tajikistan government with the support of the UN Human Rights Regional Office for Central Asia.
In Senegal, knowing your rights can save from abuses
Being involved in human rights clubs in high schools in Senegal’s capital, Dakar, where students discuss human rights issues relevant to their daily lives, has saved young girls from rights abuses.
Out of sight, out of mind: deaths in detention in Syria
Syrian men, women, and children have been transferred to one of the dozens of official or secret Government-run detention facilities in the Syrian Arab Republic. Thousands of them have been killed while in custody.
Policing human rights in Myanmar
UN human rights officers travel the length and breadth of Myanmar to train over 1,000 police officers on the best practices that drive human rights-based policing.
A story of courage to commemorate the Holocaust
“We must never allow another Shoah [Holocaust],” said survivor Paulette Angel-Rosenberg during a ceremony at the United Nations in Geneva to mark the International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust. Angel-Rosenberg shared her experience as a young Jewish girl living in France during the Second World War.
Human Rights conference in Central Asia
Central Asian countries discuss good practices and challenges in implementing recommendation of UN human rights mechanisms in a conference which took place in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan.
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