Cambodian civil society meet with diplomats prior to review

On 14-16 November 2018, the Cambodian Center for Human Rights (CCHR), OHCHR in Cambodia and UPR Info organised an in-country Pre-session in Phnom Penh. On the first day, some 60 CSO representatives gathered for a preparatory day at which UPR Info oriented participants on the upcoming dialogues with Recommending states in Phnom Penh (November) and Geneva (December). Mr. Benjamin Knödler, Deputy Head of Mission of German Embassy in Phnom Penh, held a session in which he shared how the embassy engages with the UPR in terms of collecting information; phrasing recommendations; following up on implementation; and working with national UPR stakeholders. In the afternoon, the speakers selected for the Pre-session the following day fine-tuned their interventions and presented them to participants in a mock-session for feedback. In the final segment of the day, Mr. Wilson de los Reyes from The Swedish Association for Sexuality Education [RFSU] shared insights into the diplomatic landscape in Geneva and practical suggestions on how to advocate for civil society-suggested recommendations with diplomats.

On the second day, the Delegation of the European Union to Cambodia generously hosted the Pre-session in Phnom Penh which brought together national CSOs with Recommending states from 12 embassies. Two panel sessions were moderated by UPR Info before the dialogue between diplomats and civil society continued in an informal fashion in thematic break-out groups. The focus of the third day was on the UPR engagement of youth groups. UPR Info introduced the peer-review mechanism followed by an energetic Q&A session on how youth can begin to interact with the UPR. This was followed by national CSOs sharing their human rights concerns and suggested UPR recommendations, before delegates from youth groups presented their human rights work and ideas on how to contribute in the UPR implementation phase.

Access the full activity report here