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Human Rights Council Advisory Committee concludes fourteenth session

ROUNDUP

27 February 2015

The Human Rights Council Advisory Committee today concluded its fourteenth session, which was held at the Palais des Nations in Geneva from 23 to 27 February 2015.

During the session the Advisory Committee, a body of 18 independent experts serving as a think-tank to the United Nations Human Rights Council, held a debate on the activities of vulture funds and the impact of human rights. The Independent Expert on foreign debt and human rights, Juan Pablo Boholslavsky, addressed the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee in this contest. It also discussed the promotion of human rights through sports and the Olympic ideal, and the role of local government in the promotion of human rights. In this connection, it heard a video statement by the Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, and on the right to non-discrimination in this context, Ms. Leilani Farha.

The Committee during its session discussed its final reports on attacks against persons with albinism; human rights in post-disaster and post-conflict situations; on the negative impact of corruption on the enjoyment of human rights; and human rights and unilateral coercive measures, which will be considered by the Human Rights Council at the upcoming 28th session.

The Committee decided to prepare a series of ‘reflection papers’ to be published online and discussed at ‘reflection sessions’ in August this year, on the following issues: protection of whistleblowers and human rights in the context of corruption; climate induced-displacement and human rights; mainstreaming human rights in the post-2015 development agenda; regional human rights regimes (protection mechanisms); and a global grievance forum for perceived defamation of religion.

The Committee also decided to resubmit the following research proposals to the Council: the impact of settler colonialism on human rights; whistle-blowing and human rights; preserving international watercourses to protect the rights to life and food; unaccompanied child migration and human rights; the possibility of establishing a universal human rights court: strengthening the current human rights protection system; citizens’ safety and human rights; and youth and human rights.
At the opening of the session Joachim Rücker addressed the Advisory Committee for the first time in his capacity as President of the Human Rights Council. In his address the President called on the Committee to establish good channels of interaction with States, national human rights institutions, non-governmental organizations and other civil society entities. Consequently the Committee decided to hold informal meetings with regional groups and with national human rights institutions in addition to their meetings with the Human Rights Council bureau, regional/political group coordinators and non-governmental organizations. The Committee also asked the Secretariat to consider ways of enriching engagement with non-governmental organizations from the Global South.

Documentation relating to the fourteenth session, including the agenda and draft programme of work, can be found on the Advisory Committee’s webpage.

The fifteenth session of the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee will be held at the Palais des Nations in Geneva from 10 to 14 August 2015.

Background


The Advisory Committee is a body of 18 independent experts who support the work of the Human Rights Council. It was established in 2008, pursuant to Human Rights Council resolution 5/1, to provide studies and research-based advice, as requested by the Council, and meets twice annually. The Committee’s work is implementation-oriented and follows thematic issues linked to the mandate of the Council, namely, the promotion and protection of all human rights. It interacts with States, national human rights institutions, non-governmental organizations and other civil society bodies.

Membership


The membership of the Advisory Committee conforms to the following geographical distribution guidelines set out in its establishing resolution: five members each from African and Asian States; three each from Latin American and Caribbean States, and Western European and other States; and two members from Eastern European States.

Following is the list of members of the Advisory Committee and expiration dates for their respective terms of office:

Saeed Mohamed Al Faihani (Bahrain) 2015; Mohamed Bennani (Morocco) 2017; Laurence Boisson de Chazournes (France) 2017*; Mario L. Coriolano (Argentina) 2015; Laura-Maria Crăciunean (Romania) 2017; Hoda Elsadda (Egypt) 2016; Karla Hananía de Varela(El Salvador) 2016; Alfred Ntunduguru Karokora (Uganda) 2016*; Mikhail Lebedev (Russian Federation) 2016; Kaoru Obata (Japan) 2016; Obiora Chinedu Okafor (Nigeria) 2017*; Katharina Pabel (Austria) 2015; Anantonia Reyes Prado (Guatemala) 2017*; Changrok Soh (Republic of Korea) 2017; Ahmer Bilal Soofi (Pakistan) 2017*; Imeru Tamrat Yigezu (Ethiopia) 2015; Yishan Zhang (China) 2016 and Jean Ziegler (Switzerland) 2016.
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For use of the information media; not an official record