HRC 46th Session - Item 2 General debate on oral update by the High Commissioner (HC)


Human Rights Council 46th Session.
Item 2: General debate on oral update by the High Commissioner (HC)

Statement delivered by Ambassador Tine Mørch Smith, Permanent Representative of Norway


                                                                                        Check against delivery


Madame President,

More than ever, the world needs multilateral cooperation and a rules-based order. We need the whole of UN to show strong leadership in the protection and promotion of human rights and human rights defenders.

The funding of the human rights pillar in the UN is an ongoing challenge. We urge states to step up their contributions and to ensure sufficient and timely financing.  

We must ensure civil society participation in UN mechanisms, without fearing reprisals. We are deeply concerned about the continuing restrictions, attacks, threats and other challenges facing human rights defenders, civil society, journalists, and media workers. Covid-19 has increased this trend, and even health workers are being targeted.

Madame High Commissioner,

Norway would like to thank you for the updates, including on the situation in Colombia, Guatemala and Venezuela. We appreciate the High Commissioner’s constructive involvement and encourage these and all other countries to fully cooperate with the OHCHR.

In Colombia, the lack of security and the increase in killings of human rights defenders, social leaders and former guerilla soldiers is a serious threat to the peace agreement.

In Guatemala, we share your concern on the stalled appointments of magistrates for the Courts and the attacks on the Human Rights Ombudsman.

Regarding Venezuela, we are concerned about the democratic and humanitarian space in the country. The reported targeting of social and health workers and journalists is deeply worrying.

I thank you.