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Intersessional Seminar on Youth and Human Rights

Monday 12 April 2021, 10am - 12pm & 3pm – 5pm CEST (online)

In July 2019, the Human Rights Council adopted resolution 41/13 on youth and human rights. In the resolution, the Council requested the High Commissioner to organize and convene a full-day intersessional seminar focused on the challenges and opportunities of young people in the field of human rights, with the participation and involvement of youth-led and youth-focused organizations. Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, in October 2020 the Human Rights Council adopted decision 45/113 to postpone the seminar to 2021.

The objectives of the seminar are to:

  • Highlight discrimination and challenges that young people in all their diversity face in the realization of their human rights, by virtue of their age;
  • Explore how youth is mainstreamed across different human rights mechanisms and consider possibilities to further enhance youth mainstreaming;
  • Identify possible actions and measures for the consideration of Member States and the Human Rights Council to improve human rights for young people.

The Intersessional Seminar is open to UN Member and Observer States, Intergovernmental Organizations, UN agencies, funds and programmes, International Organizations, National Human Rights Institutions, ECOSOC-accredited Non-Governmental Organizations as well as youth-led and youth-focused organizations.

Relevant Documents

Event recording

Audio recordings of the event in the six UN languages (listed by speaker in chronological order)

Automatically generated transcriptions of the event are available as follows:

The transcriptions are delivered without any human post-editing and are not totally verbatim. They are provided for the convenience of participants and organizers and do not constitute an official record of the meeting.


Session 1 | Opening

  • Michelle Bachelet, High Commissioner for Human Rights (Videotext)
  • Jayathma Wickramanayake, Secretary-General's Envoy on Youth (Text)
  • H.E. Mr. Joaquín Alexander Maza Martelli, Permanent Representative of El Salvador to the United Nations Office and other International Organizations in Geneva (Text in Español)

Session 2 | Challenges and discrimination faced by young people in the realization of their rights

  • Nerima Wako-Ojiwa, Executive Director, Siasa Place (Videotext)
  • Niall O'Higgins, Senior Economist, International Labour Organization (Presentation)
  • Poppy Stanbury, Advocacy Coordinator, CHOICE for Youth and Sexuality (TextPresentation)
  • Tania Rosas, Founder, Fundación El Origen (Origin Learning Fund) and SDG Young Leader (Videotext)
  • Tahere Siisiialafia, Chair, Pacific Youth Council
  • Gift Dzorai, National Director, Zimbabwe Care Leavers Network (Videopresentation)

List of Speakers

  • Austria (Text)
  • India (Videotext)
  • World Health Organization (Text)
  • UN Youth Delegate of Czechia (Text)
  • Youth Delegate of The Bahamas (Text)
  • Ombudsman of the Republic of Bulgaria (Text)
  • International Falcon Movement - Socialist Education International (Text)
  • Tunisia (Text in العربية)
  • China
  • International Disability Alliance (Text)
  • United States of America
  • German UN Youth Delegates (Text)
  • UN Women
  • National Youth Council of Spain
  • UN Youth Delegate of Namibia (Text)
  • The Youth Affairs Agency of the Republic of Uzbekistan
  • Terre des hommes (Text)
  • UN Youth Delegate of Luxembourg (Text)
  • Nepal (Videotext)
  • Youth Policy Labs – Independent Think Tank
  • Ukrainian UN Youth Delegate [Artur Aheiev] (Text)
  • Slovenian UN Youth Delegate (Text)
  • ASHIA International [Association of Solidarity through Humanitarian Imperative Action] (Text in EnglishFrançais)
  • Ukrainian UN Youth Delegate [Dmytro Tomenko] (Text)
  • Egypt (Text)
  • Morocco (Text in Français)
  • Association Care Leaver Austria (Text)
  • International Human Rights Council (Text)

Session 3 | Youth mainstreaming in human rights mechanisms and next steps on youth and human rights at the international level

  • Message from Akmal Saidov, Director of the National Center for Human Rights of Uzbekistan (Video in русский, text in русский)
  • Alfonso Barragues, Deputy Director, United Nations Population Fund Liaison Office in Geneva (Text)
  • Paulina Jalaksova, Board Member, European Youth Forum (Text)
  • Anya Gass, Youth Advocacy Officer, Plan International (Text)
  • Rita Izsák-Ndiaye, Member of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (Text)
  • Balal Manzour, Content Committee, World Youth Forum

List of Speakers

  • National Authority for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, Children and Adoptions of Romania [on behalf of Romania] (Videotext)
  • Greece (Text)
  • Advisory Council on Youth - Council of Europe (Text)
  • Federal Agency for Youth Affairs of the Russian Federation (Video in русский, text in русский)
  • Kazakhstan (VideoText)
  • Malaysia
  • Alliance Creative Community Project (Videotext)
  • Italy (Text)
  • Argentina (Text in Español)
  • UNDP (Videotext)
  • Education Above All Foundation (Text)
  • Ministry of Women, Family and Human Rights of Brazil (Videotext)
  • Australian UN Youth Delegate
  • International Lesbian and Gay Association [ILGA World] (Videotext)
  • UN Youth Delegate of Czechia (Text)
  • The European Union (Videotext)
  • International Federation of Medical Students' Associations (Text)
  • Dutch UN Youth Representative on Human Rights & Security
  • UN Youth Delegate of Namibia (Text)
  • Belarusian National Youth Council RADA (Text)
  • Maat for Peace, Development and Human Rights Association
  • The Lancet and Financial Times Commission
  • Green Hope Foundation (Text)

Session 4 | Closing remarks

  • H.E. Mr. Rui Macieira, Permanent Representative of Portugal to the United Nations Office and other International Organizations in Geneva (Text)

Background Documents