Item 5 - Human rights bodies and mechanisms


Human Rights Council 45th Session.
Item 5: Human rights bodies and mechanisms

Joint statement on behalf of 7 countries; Australia, Canada, Iceland, Liechtenstein, New Zealand, Switzerland and Norway as delivered by
First Secretary, Mr Sean Lobo

29 September 2020

                                                                                       Check against delivery

Mme. President,

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of: Australia, Canada, Iceland, Liechtenstein, New Zealand, Norway and Switzerland.

The Human Rights Council’s Special Procedures are an essential element of the international human rights system. We value the work of Special Procedures Mandate Holders in shining a light on human rights violations and abuses, sharing best practice, and promoting accountability.

We agree that Mandate Holders must adhere to the highest standards of conduct, in line with their mandates and the Code of Conduct for Special Procedures Mandate Holders. We applaud their commitment and professionalism. 

We regret increasing number of complaints against individual Mandate Holders for simply carrying out their duties as mandated by the Council. Whether intended or not, such claims may have the effect of intimidating not only the targeted Mandate Holders, but also Mandate Holders more generally. We encourage states to raise any complaints through the Internal Advisory Procedure, which is open to member states, civil society and Mandate Holders themselves.

We condemn any acts or threats of intimidation or reprisal against Mandate Holders of this Council as a result of their important work.

We call on all member states to engage cooperatively and constructively with Mandate Holders, including by issuing standing invitations for visits by thematic mandate holders and by allowing country-specific mandate holders to access the countries they are mandated to consider.