OHCHR in the Russian Federation
UN Human Rights’ project office in Moscow operates on the basis of a “Framework for Cooperation with the Russian Federation for 2007 and beyond” (FfC), which is clustered around four areas: (1) rule of law; (2) equality and tolerance; (3) human rights education and information and (4) mainstreaming human rights within the United Nations Country Team. UN Human Rights cooperates with Government institutions, NHRIs at the federal and regional levels, and civil society organizations to promote the implementation of human rights norms, standards and the recommendations of human rights mechanisms.
Type of engagement
Human Rights Adviser /Project Office
Annual budget needs
- UN Human Rights has controbuted to enhancing the knowledge and awareness of human rights among state and non-state actors, broadly disseminated human rights information and recommendations from human rights mechanisms, advocated on behalf of vulnerable groups, and facilitated knowledge-sharing and networking in the area of human rights through partnerships with Russian universities, NHRIs, civil society organizations, state libraries and through particpation in the annual International Human Rights Film Festival “Stalker”.
- In 2009, a Human Rights Masters Programme (HRMP) was launched by a Consortium of Russian universities with OHCHR support. The programme has mandatory core courses on international human rights law, bodies and mechanisms. In less than 10 years, 216 students graduated from 9 universities in 5 regions across the Russian Federation, more than 60 students benefitted from internships in 20 universities associated with the European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratization, and over a 100 participated in 9 annual human rights summer schools in Venice. UN Human Rights provided advice on human rights substance and methodology, facilitated collaboration and networking, contributed to the creation of 4 resource centres, supported international mobility of HRMP students, and ensured access to best academic practices and human rights expertise.
- Supported by the Anti-Racial Discrimination Section, the Office enhanced the knowledge of Russian federal and regional authorities, the NHRIs, civil society activists, media and academia about international anti-discrimination norms and standards through training and round-table discussions, and provided advice to elaborate action plans to combat discrimination and xenophobia, including in sport. In the context of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, OHCHR supported the federal and regional NHRIs to promote tolerance and non-discrimination, and contributed to the elaboration a “free of discrimination legacy package” to continue anti-discrimination efforts beyond the tournament at all levels.
- Since 2013, the Office has been supporting and hosting annual study visits for Russian civil servants to its Geneva headquarters. Over 60 representatives of the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Defence, Interior, Justice, Sports, Youth, the State Penitentiary Service and the Russian Federation Office to the European Court of Human Rights have taken part in a comprehensive Human Rights Orientation Programme. This has enabled them to (1) increase their knowledge about the functioning of the human rights system and mechanisms to protect human rights; (2) enhance their ability to apply international human rights norms and standards in their work and (3) increase their skills and capacity to professionally fulfil Russia’s human rights reporting obligations.
- The Office promotes human rights issues and international human rights mechanisms at the national level via digital tools and printing materials. It focuses on the youth using social media such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter.
- UN Human Rights leads the UN Theme Group on Gender issues strengthening coordination with the UN agencies present in Russia to ensure that gender perspectives and diversity are respected, providing advice in gender mainstreaming and relevant human rights mechanisms. Gender awareness raising is also ensured through special events organized within the framework of the International Women’s Day celebration and the UN Secretary-General’s 16 Days Campaign against Gender-Based Violence, and jointly with the Theme Group, NHRIs and civil society.
Partners and Donors
Partners: UN agencies, Federal and regional Ombudspersons, Russian universities, European Inter-University Centre for Human Rights and Democratization (EIUC), state libraries, civil society.
Donors: Russian Federation through its Voluntary Contribution to OHCHR.
UN Human Rights Focus Areas
Mechanisms: Increasing implementation of the international human rights mechanisms outcomes
Non discrimination: Enhancing equality and countering discrimination
Participation: Enhancing & protecting civic space and people's participation
Persons with disabilities
Last reviewed: March 2019