From 17 to 19 May, the International Coordinating Committee (ICC) for National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs) held its 24th General Meeting in Geneva, Switzerland. One of the discussions was dedicated to the engagement of NHRIs in treaty bodies and UPR follow up where NHRIs shared their experiences in working with the UPR and implementing recommendations.
On May 30, the Human Rights Council (HRC) started its 17th session. In her opening statement, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Navi Pillay, called on the international community, including the HRC and OHCHR, to establish a follow-up process to tackle the numerous recommendations coming from the UPR.
During this 17th session, several issues related to the follow-up to the HRC Review on the UPR need to be decided upon. To this end, the HRC President held on Friday 27th May an informal consultation during which the order of review, the duration of the Working Group review, the modalities for the list of speakers, the adjustment of general guidelines 6/102 and the revision of the Terms of References for the Funds for participation and the technical and financial assistance were discussed. Based on the consultation, the actual trend is the following: the order of review should be the same as during the first cycle and the two last States of session 1 will be moved to session 2, the four last of session 2 moved to session 3, etc; the Working Group review will most likely be extended to 3,5 hours; the modalities for the list of speakers should be as contained in the Outcome of the HRC Review and the General guidelines will only be slightly modified.
On Wednesday 8 June, Canada will organise a side event on mid-term reporting. The delegation, together with other States under Review at session 4, will share their progress in implementing the recommendations received in February 2009. The side event will be open to NGOs which will be able to ask questions to the States.
From 7 to 9 June, the Human Rights Council will adopt the Reports of the Working Group of States reviewed during session 10 held last January. Those countries include, in order of adoption: Nauru, Rwanda, Nepal, Saint Lucia, Oman, Austria, Myanmar, Australia, Georgia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Sao Tome and Principe, Namibia, Niger, Mozambique, Estonia and Paraguay. So far, only seven States (Australia, Austria, Georgia, Myanmar, Nepal, Nauru and Rwanda) have presented an addendum containing their responses to recommendations.
The adoption of the Report on Libya, initially scheduled for March, and then moved to June by the HRC Bureau, has been further postponed to the 18th session of the HRC in September.
At UPR Info, we released an Excel sheet containing all advance written questions from session 1 to 8. The sheet allows the user to sort the questions by State under Review, State or issue. The list of issues is the same as the one contained in the database of UPR recommendations. This Excel sheet will facilitate NGOs’ work on lobbying by enabling them to easily find which States are asking questions on their issue of concern.