Purpose of the mandate
International solidarity is the expression of a spirit of unity among individuals, peoples, States and international organizations. It encompasses the union of interests, purposes and actions and the recognition of different needs and rights to achieve common goals.
International solidarity is a foundational principle underpinning contemporary international law in order to preserve international order and to ensure the survival of international society.
The general objective of international solidarity is to create an enabling environment for:
- Preventing and removing the causes of asymmetries and inequities between and within States, and the structural obstacles that generate and perpetuate poverty and inequality worldwide;
- Engendering trust and mutual respect between States and non-State actors to foster peace and security, development and human rights;
- Promoting a social and international order in which all human rights and fundamental freedoms can be fully realized.
Read more about human rights based international solidarity.
About the mandate
The mandate of the Independent Expert on human rights and international solidarity was created in 2005 by the predecessor of the Human Rights Council, the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (see resolution
2005/55). The Human Rights Council extended the mandate for a further period of three years in 2014 (resolution
26/6), in 2017 (resolution
35/3), and in 2020 (resolution
Read more about the mandate.
Current mandate holder
Professor Obiora C. Okafor was appointed by the Human Rights Council as the Independent Expert on human rights and international solidarity in June 2017. He assumed his functions on 1 August 2017. Mr. Okafor is the York Research Chair in International and Transnational Legal Studies (Senior Tier) and a tenured Full Professor of Law at the Osgoode Hall Law School of York University, Toronto, Canada. He is also a former Chairperson of the UN Human Rights Council Advisory Committee.
Read more about Professor Obiora C. Okafor.
Draft declaration on the right to international solidarity
Latest thematic reports
International solidarity in aid of the realization of human rights during and after the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic: in this report, the Independent Expert discusses how international solidarity in aid of the fuller realization of all categories of human rights has, or has not, been expressed by States and other actors in the context of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. He discusses the serious threats to the enjoyment of human rights posed by the pandemic and the measures put into place to control it. He articulates the moral and legal rationale for an international solidarity obligation, including in the context of the pandemic, discusses examples of gaps in the enjoyment of international solidarity and identifies and highlights positive expressions of such solidarity by States and non-State actors, including best practices. View report page | View document:
Populism and the threat to international solidarity: This report, presented to the 75th session of the General Assembly, examines the link between certain forms of contemporary populism and the enjoyment, or lack thereof, of human rights-based international solidarity. The negative impacts of certain forms of populism on the building and maintenance of international solidarity are emphasized in the report in order to support the realization of human rights for everyone around the world.
View report page | View document:
International solidarity and climate change: In this report, the Independent Expert engages with one of the thematic priorities that he established for his mandate, namely the enjoyment, or lack thereof, of human rights-based international solidarity in the context of climate change.
View report page | View document:
Latest country visits
Visit to Qatar (2-10 September 2019)
A/HRC/44/44/Add.1 | Comments by the State:
Visit to Netherlands (5-13 November 2018)