OHCHR regional offices and centres are established on the basis of a standard agreement between OHCHR and the host country, following consultations with countries of the region. Regional offices and centres focus on cross-cutting regional human rights concerns and also support, at national level, follow-up to treaty bodies and special procedures as well as matters relating to the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). They work closely with regional and sub-regional inter-governmental organizations. They also complement the expertise of human rights country presences by providing support on institutional and thematic issues. Regional offices and centres are funded both by regular budget and extra-budgetary contributions.
Regional offices vary in size, with a minimum of three professional officers. Their activities, analyses, conclusions and recommendations are reported to the High Commissioner including through her annual report to the Human Rights Council.
In 2020, UN Human Rights had 12 regional offices covering East Africa (Addis Ababa), Southern Africa (Pretoria), West Africa (Dakar) Central America (Panama City), South America (Santiago de Chile), Europe (Brussels), Central Asia (Bishkek), South East Asia (Bangkok), Pacific (Suva) and the Middle East and North Africa (Beirut). UN Human Rights also has a Regional Centre for Human Rights and Democracy for Central Africa in Cameroon (Yaound) and a Training and Documentation Centre for South-West Asia and the Arab Region in Qatar (Doha). Regional offices have a crucial role to play in promoting and protecting human rights in countries of their region, including by working with regional bodies, such as the African Union.
Details on the individual field presences can be found in the relevant sections of the Office Management Plan 2018-2021.