Human Rights

FEATURE: Visually impaired professor to light way forward on UN disability agenda

Of the world’s 7.4 billion people, some 15 per cent – or one billion – are said to have some form of disability.

On International Day, UN spotlights need to combat forced labour, particularly of children

Noting that the number of children engaged in the worst forms of child labour has decreased and frameworks to tackle contemporary slavery and trafficking have expanded, senior United Nations officials, including the Secretary-General and the head of the UN labour agency, today called for concerted action to save those who remain trapped in extreme exploitation, abuse and violence, including sexual and gender-based violence.

Australia’s human rights record tainted by ‘regressive’ migration policies – UN expert

Concluding his first official visit to Australia, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants said the country’s human rights standing has been tarnished by its “regressive” migration policies that fall “way behind” international standards.

FEATURE: Impunity for crimes against journalists must end to protect open democratic societies – experts tell UN

On the morning of 1 November 2015, the day before the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists last year, Abdalaziz Alhamza, co-founder of a campaign to expose atrocities committed against civilians in the Syrian city of Raqqa, received two photos. One was of his colleague – with no head.

Politics prevailed over promises by France and UK in handling of children at Calais ‘Jungle’ – UN experts

The Governments of France and the United Kingdom fell seriously short of their obligations under the international child rights convention by inadequately handling the situation of minors living at the Calais migrant camp in France, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of the Child has said.

Violations of freedom of expression and the media continue in Belarus – UN rights expert

Human rights violations are growing worse in Belarus, according to a new report by the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in the country, Miklós Haraszti, which he presented to the UN General Assembly today.

Global treaties provide blueprint to ‘seal cracks’ in legal regime on human trafficking – UN anti-crime chief

Tackling human trafficking is not a simple or trivial pursuit, the head of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) said today, urging States to implement all provisions of the so-called ‘Palermo protocol,’ the nearly universal UN treaty that contains a ‘blueprint’ for successfully preventing and supressing the scourge while punishing perpetrators.

Swift approval of Guatemala’s justice reform bill an ‘historic’ opportunity to fight impunity – UN rights office

Welcoming a recent draft bill to the Guatemalan Congress on constitutional justice reform, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) today urged a rapid approval by the Government while voicing concern over the growing threats against judicial authorities.

Yazidi survivor of ISIL’s human trafficking appointed UN Goodwill Envoy for victims

Nobel Peace Prize nominee, Nadia Murad Basee Taha, who survived trafficking at the hands of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL/Da’esh) was today appointed a United Nations advocate for the victims of human trafficking.

Women and girls with disabilities are equal rights holders, not ‘helpless objects of pity’ – UN rights committee

Noting that national policies often tend to treat women and girls with disabilities as helpless objects of pity or allow them to be treated in that manner, the United Nations Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities has stressed that, instead, they need to be empowered and allowed to enjoy their fundamental rights and freedoms, as any other person.