Global NHRI body to consider reprisals against members
Graphic: GANHRI Chairperson, Professor Beate Rudolf
The APF raise concerns about attacks on NHRIs at the upcoming meeting of the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions.
In a number of countries around the globe, national human rights institutions (NHRIs) face threats and reprisals for their work to promote and protect fundamental rights.
In holding their governments accountable for their commitments under international human rights law, NHRIs and their leadership teams have experienced sustained criticism from political leaders, legal proceedings and cuts to their budgets
The APF has been gravely concerned by attacks and reprisals against some of our members – including the NHRIs of Australia, Afghanistan, Malaysia, the Maldives and the Philippines – for undertaking human rights work in accordance with their legal mandate.
The APF will raise these concerns at the upcoming bureau meeting of the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions (GANHRI), to be held in San Jose, Costa Rica, from 1-3 November 2017.
The meeting will examine the role of GANHRI, OHCHR, UNDP and other groups to support NHRIs under threat and to promote their independence.
"Independence and integrity are central to NHRIs being effective and trusted human rights defenders," said Pip Dargan, Deputy Director of the APF secretariat, ahead of the meeting.
"Our role is to mobilise support for APF members facing reprisals, where they request it, and to highlight to governments the necessity for NHRIs to perform their duties with independence and impartiality, without interference."
Graphic: NHRI representatives gather for a group photo at the 2017 GANHRI Annual Meeting
The GANHRI Bureau meeting will also brainstorm ideas for a series of year-long events to promote the 25th anniversary of the Paris Principles and the global movement of NHRIs, as well as consider possible themes for the GANHRI International Conference in 2018.
The meeting will also highlight the positive impact that NHRIs are making in their respective regions. In his report to GANHRI, APF Chairperson Byambadorj Jamsran, Chief Commissioner of the National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia, drew attention to:
- National-level partnerships between NHRIs and civil society groups to counter violence, discrimination and prejudice against LGBTI people, established as part of a ground-breaking APF-UNDP training program in 2016-17
- A landmark national inquiry by the Ombudsman of Samoa, launched on 10 December 2016, examining the factors contributing to the widespread incidence of family violence
- Passage of legislation to establish an NHRI in Tuvalu, as well as government and community support to establish NHRIs in four other Pacific Island nations.
Date: 24 October 2017
- GANHRI Chairperson, Professor Beate Rudolf - GANHRI
- NHRI representatives gather for a group photo at the 2017 GANHRI Annual Meeting - GANHRI