29 November 2018
On 23 November 2018, the two coordinators of the Geneva Human Rights Platform, Felix Kirchmeier and Kamelia Kemileva organized a briefing for states on the future of United Nations (UN) treaty bodies (TBs).
Around 60 diplomats participated in the briefing which addressed the upcoming review at the General Assembly (GA) and the outcomes of our Oslo Conference, co-organized with the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights, on the meaning of this review for national stakeholders.
‘We’ve been organizing briefings for states on the academic inputs to the 2020 GA review since 2016, along with parallel briefings for TBs members and civil society representatives. The briefings allow us to present and discuss our recommendations and proposals with Geneva-based stakeholders, including diplomats’ explains Felix Kirchmeier.
The briefing focused on an idea that emerged from the Oslo conference and that builds upon the recommendations entailed in our publication Optimizing the UN Treaty Body System to develop synergies at the domestic level.
‘The idea is that in the middle of a state’s reporting cycle before a specific TB, one member of each of the committees concerned travels to this country to discuss the implementation of the recommendations that were formulated in the last review’ underlines Felix Kirchmeier.
‘If implemented, this measure could fill a potential protection gap resulting from an eight-year reporting cycle and could also contribute to a better implementation and follow-up of TBs recommendations’ stresses Kamelia Kemileva.
Participants also discussed the tight schedule until the 2020 review as the GA resolution adopted on 19 November (A/C.3/73/L.38) which requires that the UN Secretary-General presents his 2020 TB review report by January 2020.
‘This schedule implies that all stakeholders, including academic institution like us, have only a few months left to submit inputs into the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights for consideration in this report’ explains Kamelia Kemileva.
The Geneva Academy will continue, via its Geneva Human Rights Platform, to regularly brief states on academic inputs for the 2020 review discussion.
‘We will notably dedicate one of these briefings to address the national impact of TBs. The discussion will be informed by a dedicated study carried out by the University of Pretoria, under the leadership of Professor Christof Heyns, on the national impact of TBs in 20 states, and compared with a similar study carried out 20 years ago’ says Felix Kirchmeier.
Given the lack of definition of less-lethal weapons in international human rights (IHRL), law, the absence of international standards regulating their use and the lack of clarity regarding their human rights impact and compliance with IHRL, the annual seminar on current human rights challenges related to the use of force concluded with a call to further explore the use of LLW for law enforcement purposes.
Olivier Chamard / Geneva Academy
Leading academics, law enforcement experts and practitioners from different regions and legal backgrounds, and representatives from international organizations and civil society will join an academic working group to discuss use of force challenges in different contexts.
This event marks the launch of our new publication which addresses the handling of individual communications and tackles question related to the efficiency in handing them.
This training course provides participants with a deep understanding of the international legal framework for the protection of human rights and the environment as well as in-depth knowledge of how to promote environmental protection through existing human rights mechanisms. The 2019 edition will dedicate special attention to plastic pollution.
UN Photo / Jean-Marc Ferré
This training course will explore the origin and evolution of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) and its functioning in Geneva and will focus on the nature of implementation of the UPR recommendations at the national level.
This research project aims at addressing the challenges – legal and law enforcement – encountered during the management of assemblies and at filling the protection gaps by developing new standards and useful tools.
We are a partner of the Human Rights, Big Data and Technology Project, housed at the University of Essex’s Human Rights Centre, which aims to map and analyse the human rights challenges and opportunities presented by the use of big data and associated technologies. It notably examines whether fundamental human rights concepts and approaches need to be updated and adapted to meet the new realities of the digital age.