Open-ended intergovernmental working group to elaborate the content of an international regulatory framework, without prejudging the nature thereof, relating to the activities of private military and security companies

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On 28 September 2017, the Human Rights Council in its resolution 36/11 decided to establish a new open-ended intergovernmental working group, for a period of three years, with a mandate to elaborate the content of an international regulatory framework, without prejudging the nature thereof, to protect human rights and ensure accountability for violations and abuses relating to the activities of private military and security companies, to be informed by the discussion document on elements for an international regulatory framework on the regulation, monitoring and oversight of the activities of private military and security companies, as prepared by the Chair-Rapporteur, and further inputs from Member States and other stakeholders.

The Human Rights Council also acknowledged the importance of providing the working group with the expertise and expert advice necessary to fulfil its mandate, and decided that the working group shall invite experts and all relevant stakeholders to participate in its work. The Council invited the contributions of Governments, relevant special procedure mandate holders and mechanisms of the Human Rights Council, the treaty bodies, regional groups, intergovernmental organizations, civil society, the industry and other stakeholders with relevant expertise, including the Co-Chairs of the Montreux Document Forum and the International Code of Conduct Association.

The first session of the intergovernmental working group will take place from 20 to 24 May 2019 at Palais des Nations, room XX.

Accreditation

Only UN Member and Observer States, specialized agencies and other international organizations, national human rights institutions with "A status" accreditation, and NGOs with ECOSOC consultative status may attend and participate in the public meetings of the OEIGWG. Others may be able to access the public gallery during the session.

All registration and accreditation requests must be made online through UNOG’s Indico system.

Please create an Indico account or log in to an existing one, and then proceed to the registration form for the 1st session of the OEIGWG. Specific instructions based on type of delegation may be found below.

If you have any questions regarding the Indico registration system, please consult the Indico help page, consult the Indico FAQ, or send specific questions to the OEIGWG Secretariat at igwg-pmsc@ohchr.org.

UN Member and Observer State Delegations

All UN Member and Observer States may participate in the OEIGWG session.

Requesting Accreditation

In addition to filling in the required information on the registration form, members of State delegations are kindly asked to attach a scanned Note Verbale, made out to the OEIGWG Secretariat at OHCHR, indicating all members of the delegation wishing to attend the session. This file should be uploaded in the section entitled "Mandatory documents for participants to the session."

International Organizations

Specialized agencies and other intergovernmental organizations and entities that have permanent observer status or an invitation to participate as observers in the sessions of the Human Rights Council may attend and participate in the public meetings of the OEIGWG.

Requesting Accreditation

In addition to filling in the required information on the registration form, members of international organizations are kindly asked to attach a scanned letter, made out to the OEIGWG Secretariat at OHCHR, indicating all members of the delegation wishing to attend the session. This file should be uploaded in the section entitled "Mandatory documents for participants to the session."

National Human Rights Institutions

National human rights institutions (NHRIs) with "A status" accreditation, the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions, and regional coordinating bodies of NHRIs (speaking on behalf of its "A status" members) may attend and participate in the public meetings of the OEIGWG.

Members of NHRIs that do not have "A status" accreditation may still be able to observe the session from the public gallery and attend side events.

Requesting Accreditation

In addition to filling in the required information on the registration form, national human rights institutions are kindly asked to attach a scanned letter, made out to the OEIGWG Secretariat at OHCHR, fulfilling the following criteria:

  • Drafted on the official letterhead of the organization;
  • Contains the title and dates of the session the NHRI wishes to attend: E.g., "[Name of NHRI], having "A status" accreditation with GANHRI, wishes to send the following members to attend the 1st session of the open-ended intergovernmental working group on PMSCs (20-24 May 2019)...";
  • Contains the full name (FAMILY NAME, First name) of each person who will represent the NHRI at the session; and
  • Signed by the President or Main Representative of the NHRI.

This letter should be uploaded in the section entitled "Mandatory documents for participants to the session."

Non-governmental Organizations

Only NGOs with ECOSOC consultative status at the time of the session may attend and participate in the public meetings of the OEIGWG.  Representatives from NGOs with pending ECOSOC status or no ECOSOC status cannot be accredited.

If you are not entitled to participate in the public meetings, you may still be able to observe the session from the public gallery and attend side events.

Requesting Accreditation

In addition to filling in the required information on the registration form, NGOs are kindly asked to attach a scanned letter, made out to the OEIGWG Secretariat at OHCHR, fulfilling the following criteria:

  • Drafted on the official letterhead of the organization;
  • Contains the title and dates of the session the NGO wishes to attend: E.g., "[Name of NGO], in consultative status with ECOSOC, wishes to send the following members to attend the 1st session of the open-ended intergovernmental working group on PMSCs (20-24 May 2019)...";
  • Contains the full name (FAMILY NAME, First name) of each person who will represent the organization at the session; and
  • Signed by the person designated as the President/Chief Executive Officer, Chief Administrative Officer, or Main Representative in the UN Integrated Civil Society Organizations System for Geneva in 2019: Please double check that the person signing the letter has the appropriate status in the UN iCSO System.

This letter should be uploaded in the section entitled "Mandatory documents for participants to the session."

Press / Media

Journalists may be able to cover the activities of the 1st session of the OEIGWG provided they receive approval from the UNOG Information Service to do so.

General information for journalists at UNOG.

Requesting Accreditation

In addition to filling in the required information on the registration form, please upload the necessary documents in the section entitled “Press/Media accreditation.”  For specific information on the documents that the UNOG Information Service needs in order to approve media accreditation, please consult the Media Accreditation at UNOG web page.

Public Gallery Access

A limited number of seats in the public gallery, above the conference room, are available for people wishing to observe the proceedings of the OEIGWG without being accredited as participants.  Access to the public gallery will be granted according to the availability of seating and other circumstances.

Requesting Accreditation

In addition to filling in the required information on the registration form, please:

  • Select “Other” under the section entitled “Representation Type” (regardless of what type of organization you are a part of);
  • Indicate that you are seeking access to the public gallery in the section entitled “Public Gallery Access;” and
  • Indicate which days you are requesting access for at the bottom of the registration form.

Assistance with Visa Applications

If you require a confirmation of registration for visa purposes, you may indicate so in the online registration form under the section entitled “Confirmation of registration for visa purposes.”  Uploading a scanned copy of your passport will facilitate the process.

The accreditation request letter to be uploaded in the Indico system should clearly indicate the member(s) of the delegation requiring a visa. Additionally, your accreditation request should be sent expeditiously.

Please note that receiving a confirmation of registration letter for visa purposes will not be sufficient, by itself, for obtaining a visa.  Please consult Swiss consular officials in your country regarding visa application deadlines, apply accordingly, and ensure that all documentation is in order.

Gaining Access to UNOG

Individuals with annual security badges valid for the duration of the OEIGWG session will be able to access UNOG premises and the plenary session in Room XX.

Those who have been accredited but do not have a badge must collect their security badge for the session at the Pregny Gate of the Palais des Nations, located at 8-14 Avenue de la Paix, 1211 Geneva 10. The office is open on working days from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. To collect the badge, you must present:

  • An official identity document: E.g., a passport; and
  • A copy of the confirmation email/e-ticket from the Indico system.

Additional practical informationabout getting to Pregny Gate.

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