The Geneva Human Rights Platform Welcomes Major Breakthrough for UN Treaty Bodies

At their 34th Annual Meeting, Chairpersons of United Nations (UN) treaty bodies (TBs) agreed on a predictable review schedule of eight years.

‘We have been pushing for such predictable schedules – along with others – since the beginning of our involvement in the 2020 review. This has been a key recommendation emanating from our Academic Platform on Treaty Body Review 2020 and of our follow-up work related to this review’ underlines Felix Kirchmeier, Executive Director of the Geneva Human Rights Platform.

Addressing Current Flaws in the System

Accordingly, states will have to present a report on their obligations under the treaty in question every eight years and the committees will review a state’s performance even in the absence of a report. The schedules will notably take into consideration the calendar of the Universal Periodic Review to avoid overlap.

‘Such predictable review schedules will allow addressing the existing backlog of reports pending review and will increase state parties’ compliance with their reporting obligations. While this might sound technical, it constitutes a major breakthrough’ explains Felix Kirchmeier.

‘In this respect, we developed a series of recommendations and proposals on how this can work in practice, as well as on how to do the follow-up at the national level’ he adds.

Follow-up Reviews in Between

Follow-up reviews focussing on a limited number of issues will take place in between these eight-year cycle full reviews.

‘One model for such follow-up review is the in-country focused reviews that we have been testing in Sierra Leone and Grenada. Both pilots have highlighted the benefits of such in-country follow-up mechanisms for implementation at the national level’ says Felix Kirchmeier.

‘We look forward to continuing accompanying UN TBs in this endeavour by providing concrete proposals based on our research and consultations with the various stakeholders’ he adds.

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

A group photo of participants in the pilot focused review News

Second UN Treaty Body Focused Review Pilot Takes Place in Grenada

8 April 2022

From 23 to 24 March 2022, the Geneva Human Rights Platform conducted in Grenada, in collaboration with the Commonwealth Secretariat, its second pilot of a UN treaty bodies (TBs) focused review – designed to discuss how countries implement specific recommendations issued by UN TBs between sessions.

Read more

A session of the focused review in Sierra Leone News

Report Highlights the Benefits of UN Treaty Bodies’ Focused Review Pilot

10 March 2022

The report of the first focused review pilot conducted in Sierra Leone shows the benefits that such a mechanism could bring to the work of UN treaty bodies and the implementation of their recommendations.

Read more

Plastic pollution Training

Protecting Human Rights and the Environment

12-16 September 2022

This training course will explore the major international and regional instruments for the promotion of human rights, as well as with their implementation and enforcement mechanisms; and provide practical insights into the different UN human rights mechanisms pertinent to advancing environmental issues and protecting environmental human rights defenders.

Read more

Greece, ylakio, pre-removal center. Short Course

Introduction to International Human Rights Law

Fall 2022

This short course, which can be followed in Geneva or online, will provide participants with an introduction to substantive human rights law. It will start with an introduction to the nature and sources of international human rights law and its place in the international legal system. The course will then provide a presentation of the main principles applicable to substantive rights (jurisdiction, obligation and limitations).

Read more

Session of a UN Treaty Body Project

Treaty Bodies Individual Communications Procedures

Started in January 2019

Read more

Universal Declaration of Human Rights Project

The Universality of Human Rights: Developing Narratives to Help Overcome Polarization

Started in January 2020

This research aims at taking stock of and contributing to a better understanding of the above-mentioned challenges to the principle of universality of human rights while also questioning their validity. It will identify relevant political and legal arguments and develop counter-narratives that could be instrumental to dealing with and/or overcoming the polarization of negotiations processes at the multilateral level.

Read more

Cover of the publication Publication

Implementing the Treaty Body Review 2020 – Where do we stand

published on May 2022

Felix Kirchmeier, Chloé Naret, Domenico Zipoli

Read more