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Human Rights Council Renews Mandate of Special Rapporteur on Myanmar, Adopts Resolutions on Belarus and on the Right to Food

Also Adopts Decision on High-level Panel on the Tenth Anniversary of the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to Support the Participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the Work of the Council

24 March 2021
Morning

The Human Rights Council this morning adopted four texts in which it renewed the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar for a year, and requested the High Commissioner for Human Rights to carry out a comprehensive examination of all alleged human rights violations committed in Belarus.  Other texts referred to the right to food and the holding of a panel on the tenth anniversary of the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to support the participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the work of the Council. 

On the right to food, the Council encouraged the Special Rapporteur on the right to food to continue to take into account the links between human rights and trade policy perspectives, food systems and global governance, and to cooperate with relevant international  organizations to ensure that the international trade regime and global economic architecture are geared towards fulfilling the right to food.  The Council requested all States, private actors, international organizations and agencies, within their mandates, to take fully into account the need to promote the effective realization of the right to food for all. 

The Council decided to convene, during the high-level segment of its forty-ninth session, a high-level panel discussion on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to Support the Participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the Work of the Human Rights Council focused on the benefits of universal and meaningful participation of all States Members of the United Nations in the work of the Human Rights Council, and that the discussion shall be fully accessible to persons with disabilities.

On the situation of human rights in Belarus in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election and in its aftermath, the Council, in a resolution adopted by a vote of 20 in favour, 7 against and 20 abstentions, requested the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, with assistance from relevant experts and special procedure mandate holders, inter alia: to monitor and report on the situation of human rights, to carry out a comprehensive examination of all alleged human rights violations committed in Belarus since 1 May 2020, including the possible gender dimensions of such violations, to establish the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged violations, and to collect, consolidate, preserve and analyse information and evidence with a view to contributing to accountability for perpetrators and justice for victims and, where possible, to identify those responsible.  The Council also requested the immediate operationalization of the mandate.

Prior to adopting the resolution on Belarus, the Council voted on and rejected 14 amendments.

On the situation of human rights in Myanmar, the Council decided to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar for a further period of one year.  The Council also requested the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to monitor and assess the overall human rights situation in Myanmar, with a particular focus on accountability regarding alleged violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law, as well as rule of law and security sector reform since 1 February 2021.
The webcast of the Human Rights Council meetings can be found here.  All meeting summaries can be found here.  Documents and reports related to the Human Rights Council’s forty-sixth regular session can be found here

The Council will next meet in public at 3 p.m. this afternoon to continue taking action on the remaining nine draft resolutions before concluding its regular forty-sixth session.

Action on Texts under the Agenda Item on the Promotion and Protection of all Human Rights, Civil, Political, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, including the Right to Development

Action on Resolution on the Right to Food

In a resolution (A/HRC/46/L.11) on the right to food, as orally revised, adopted without a vote, the Council encourages the Special Rapporteur to continue to take into account the links between human rights and trade policy perspectives, food systems and global governance, and to cooperate with relevant international organizations to ensure that the international trade regime and global economic architecture are geared towards fulfilling the right to food.  The Council requested all States, private actors, international organizations and agencies, within their mandates, to take fully into account the need to promote the effective realization of the right to food for all.  The Council stresses that all States should make every effort to ensure that their international policies of a political and economic nature, including international trade agreements, do not have a negative impact on the right to food in other countries.  The Council invites relevant international organizations, including the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, to avoid any actions that could have a negative impact on the realization of the right to food.  The Council also requests the Special Rapporteur to participate in relevant international dialogues and policy forums relating to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, paying particular attention to Sustainable Development Goal 2 with respect to achieving zero hunger.

Action on Decision on the High-level Panel Discussion on the Occasion of the Tenth Anniversary of the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to Support the Participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the Work of the Human Rights Council

In a decision (A/HRC/46/L.23) on the high-level panel discussion on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to support the participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the work of the Human Rights Council, adopted without a vote, the Council decides to convene, during the high-level segment of its forty-ninth session, a high-level panel discussion on the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to Support the Participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the Work of the Human Rights Council focused on the benefits of universal and meaningful participation of all States Members of the United Nations in the work of the Human Rights Council, and that the discussion shall be fully accessible to persons with disabilities.  It requests the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to organize the panel discussion, and to liaise with States and other stakeholders with a view to ensuring their participation in it, while taking into account geographical representation.  The Council also requests the Office of the High Commissioner to prepare a report on the panel discussion in the form of a summary and to submit it to the Human Rights Council at its fiftieth session; and further requests the Office of the High Commissioner, through the Trust Fund, to secure the participation of Member States that do not have a permanent resident mission in Geneva so as to achieve universal participation of all States Members Of the United Nations at the forty-ninth session of the Human Rights Council, including in the high-level panel discussion.

Action on Resolutions under the Agenda Item on Human Rights Situations that Require the Council's attention

Action on Resolution on the Situation of Human Rights in Belarus in the Run-up to the 2020 Presidential Election and in its Aftermath

In a resolution (A/HRC/46/L.19) on the situation of human rights in Belarus in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election and in its aftermath, adopted by a vote of with 20 in favour, 7 against and 20 abstentions, the Council urges Belarus to cooperate fully with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus, in particular by granting her free, full and unhindered access to the territory of the country, including unhindered access to all places of detention, and to extend full cooperation to the thematic special procedures of the Human Rights Council.  The Council requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, with assistance from relevant experts and special procedure mandate holders: to monitor and report on the situation of human rights, to carry out a comprehensive examination of all alleged human rights violations committed in Belarus since 1 May 2020, including the possible gender dimensions of such violations, to establish the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged violations, and to collect, consolidate, preserve and analyse information and evidence with a view to contributing to accountability for perpetrators and justice for victims and, where possible, to identify those responsible; to make general recommendations on improving respect for and the protection of human rights, and to provide guidance on access to justice and accountability, as appropriate; and to engage with the Belarusian authorities and all stakeholders, in particular Belarusian, regional and international civil society, international human rights organizations, United Nations agencies, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe and relevant States with a view to exchanging information, as appropriate, and providing support for national, regional and international efforts to promote accountability for human rights violations in Belarus.  The Council also requests the immediate operationalization of the mandate and requests the Office of the High Commissioner to present an interim oral update to the Human Rights Council at its forty-eighth session, and a comprehensive written report at its forty-ninth session, both to be followed by an interactive dialogue.  Furthermore, the Council requests the Secretary-General to provide the Office of the High Commissioner with full administrative, technical and logistical support and the resources necessary to enable it to carry out its mandate.

Prior to adopting the resolution, the Council voted on and rejected 14 amendments.

The results of the vote on L.19 were as follows:

In favour (20): Argentina, Austria, Bahamas, Brazil, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Fiji, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Republic of Korea, Ukraine, United Kingdom and Uruguay.

Against (7): Bolivia, China, Cuba, Eritrea, Philippines, Russian Federation and Venezuela.

Abstentions (20): Armenia, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon, India, Indonesia, Libya, Malawi, Mauritania, Namibia, Nepal, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Togo and Uzbekistan.

Action on Resolution on the Situation of Human Rights in Myanmar 
 
In a resolution (A/HRC/46/L.21/Rev.1) on the situation of human rights in Myanmar, adopted without a vote, the Council decides to extend the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar for a further period of one year, requests the Special Rapporteur to present an oral progress report to the Human Rights Council at its forty-seventh and forty-eighth sessions and to submit a written report to the Third Committee of the General Assembly at its seventy-sixth session and to the Council at its forty-ninth session, each to be followed by an interactive dialogue, in accordance with its annual programme of work, and invites the Special Rapporteur to continue to monitor the situation of human rights and to measure progress in the implementation of recommendations.  The Council recommends that the General Assembly submit the report of the Special Rapporteur to the relevant United Nations bodies for their consideration and appropriate action, taking into account the relevant conclusions and recommendations.  The Council also requests the Special Rapporteur, supported by additional human rights experts, to assess the situation of human rights since 1 February 2021 and to monitor the implementation of the present resolution, including by seeking an urgent visit to Myanmar, and to provide an oral update in his interactive dialogues with the Human Rights Council at its forty-seventh and forty-eighth sessions, and to make recommendations on additional steps necessary to address the current crisis.  The Council further requests the Special Rapporteur to undertake thematic research with a view to monitoring the implementation of the recommendations made by the independent international fact-finding mission on Myanmar, and to provide detailed updates on the issues covered by the mission in its reports and conference room papers.  In addition, the Council requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to monitor and assess the overall human rights situation in Myanmar, with a particular focus on accountability regarding alleged violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law, as well as rule of law and security sector reform since 1 February 2021, with the support of specialist experts and in complementarity to the work of the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar and the reports of the Special Rapporteur, including in monitoring the implementation of the recommendations made by the independent international fact-finding mission in its reports and conference room papers, and recommendations contained in the reports of the High Commissioner on the situation of human rights of Rohingya Muslims and other minorities in Myanmar, and to provide to the Human Rights Council an oral update at its forty-seventh session, a written update at its forty-eighth session and a comprehensive report at its forty-ninth session, each to be followed by an interactive dialogue. 


Link: https://www.ungeneva.org/en/news-media/meeting-summary/2021/03/le-conseil-des-droits-de-lhomme-condamne-les-graves-violations

 

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