Human Rights Council to Hold its Regular Forty-Eighth Session from 13 September to 8 October 2021
The Human Rights Council will hold its regular forty-eighth session from 13 September to 8 October at the Palais des Nations in Geneva.
Ambassador Nazhat Shameem Khan of Fiji, President of the Human Rights Council, will open the hybrid session at 10 a.m. on Monday, 13 September in room XX.
Over four weeks, the Council will discuss almost 90 reports presented by human rights experts and bodies on numerous thematic themes and the situation of human rights in more than 40 countries. The Council will also hold more than 30 interactive debates with mandate holders.
Michelle Bachelet, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, will present an update on her annual report on the first day of the Council, while the general debate on her update will start on Tuesday, 14 September at 10 a.m., and will conclude the following day.
At this session, the Council will hold a number of interactive debates, including on unilateral coercive measures (16 September); on the integration of a gender perspective (27 September); on the rights of indigenous peoples (28 September); on deepening inequalities exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic (28 September); on the implementation of the United Nations Declaration on Human Rights Education and Training (29 September); and on the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of peaceful protests (29 September).
Concerning country reports, the Council will hear the presentation of reports or oral updates by the High Commissioner or the United Nations Secretary-General on
Afghanistan, Nicaragua and Sri Lanka on 13 September. On the same day in the afternoon, it will hold an enhanced interactive dialogue on the High Commissioner’s oral update on the situation of human rights in the Tigray region of Ethiopia. An interactive dialogue will be held with the Group of Experts on Yemen on 14 September.
Concerning Myanmar, the Council will hold an interactive dialogue on the report of the Independent Investigative Mechanism for Myanmar on 13 September; an interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Myanmar on his oral progress report on 22 September; and an interactive dialogue on the High Commissioner’s written update on Myanmar on 23 September. As for Syria, the Council will hold an interactive dialogue with the commission of inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic on 23 September, while it will discuss the oral update by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on the extent of civilian casualties in the Syrian Arab Republic the following day.
Concerning Belarus, the Council will discuss an interim oral update by the Office of the High Commissioner on 24 September. At the same meeting, it will hold an interactive dialogue with the international independent fact-finding mission on the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.
Under its agenda item on technical assistance and capacity building, the Council will discuss, during the last week of the session, the reports or oral updates concerning Ukraine (5 October); Democratic Republic of the Congo, as well as hearing the final report of the international group of experts on the situation in Kasaï (5 October); and Cambodia, with the presentation of the reports of the Secretary-General (7 October) and of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Cambodia (6 October). Also on 6 October, the Council will hold an enhanced interactive dialogue on the oral update of the High Commissioner on technical assistance and capacity building for South Sudan, as well as an enhanced interactive dialogue on the report of the High Commissioner on Sudan.
Continuing with its agenda item on technical assistance and capacity building, the Council will discuss reports by the High Commissioner and the United Nations Secretary-General on 7 October concerning Georgia, the Philippines and Yemen. An interactive dialogue with the Independent Expert on the Central African Republic will be held on the same day, as well as an interactive dialogue with the fact-finding mission on Libya.
Monday, 4 October, will be dedicated to the fight against racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, with the Council holding an interactive dialogue with the Working Group on People of African Descent, another interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on racism, as well as a general debate, which will conclude the following day.
During the first two weeks of the session, the Council will discuss reports prepared by mandate holders on the following themes: water and sanitation; hazardous substances and waste; international order; the right to development; truth, justice and reparations; the rights of older persons; the human rights of women and girls in conflict and post-conflict situations; and contemporary forms of slavery. It will also discuss reports by the working groups dealing with arbitrary detention (20 September), enforced or involuntary disappearances (21 September), as well as mercenaries (21 September).
The President of the Economic and Social Council will address the Council on 22 September, followed by a briefing by the Chair of the Peacebuilding Commission on the work of the Commission. Thematic reports by the Secretary-General and the High Commissioner will also be presented on 22 September, as well as reports by the working groups on the right to development, and on private military and security companies. The general debate on the promotion and protection of all human rights, including the right to development, will also be held on that day.
On the situation of human rights in Palestine and in other occupied Arab territories, the Council will discuss the report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights on the allocation of water resources in the occupied Palestinian Territory, including in East Jerusalem on 1 October. It will also hear an update on the implementation of a resolution adopted by a special session in May 2021, according to which an international commission of inquiry to investigate violations of international humanitarian law and all alleged violations will be created to discuss abuses of international human rights law leading up to and since 13 April 2021.
Concerning indigenous peoples, the Council will hold on 27 and 28 September interactive dialogues with the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples, and the Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. It will also hold its annual panel on the rights of indigenous peoples on 27 September.
An interactive dialogue on the report of the Secretary-General on reprisals will be held on 29 September. On 30 September, the Council will hold an interactive dialogue with the Human Rights Council Advisory Committee, followed by a general debate on human rights mechanisms and bodies.
The Council will also consider on 30 September and 1 October the outcomes of the Universal Periodic Reviews of the following 15 States: Myanmar, Namibia, Niger, Mozambique, Estonia, Belgium, Paraguay, Denmark, Somalia, Palau, Solomon Islands, Seychelles, Latvia, Singapore and Sierra Leone.
On the last two days of the session, 7 and 8 October, the Council will take action of draft decisions and resolutions on the various issues discussed during the session. The President will also proceed with the appointment of new mandate holders.
The provisional programme of work of the session and the annotated agenda are available here .
The composition of the Human Rights Council at its forty-eighth session is as follows: Argentina (2021); Armenia (2022); Austria (2021); Bahamas (2021); Bahrain (2021); Bangladesh (2021); Bolivia (Plurinational State of) (2023); Brazil (2022); Bulgaria (2021); Burkina Faso (2021); Cameroon (2021); China (2023); Côte d’Ivoire (2023); Cuba (2023); Czechia (2021); Denmark (2021); Eritrea (2021); Fiji (2021); France (2023); Gabon (2023); Germany (2022); India (2021); Indonesia (2022); Italy (2021); Japan (2022); Libya (2022); Malawi (2023); Marshall Islands (2022); Mauritania (2022); Mexico (2023); Namibia (2022); Nepal (2023); Netherlands (2022); Pakistan (2023); Philippines (2021); Poland (2022); Republic of Korea (2022); Russian Federation (2023); Senegal (2023); Somalia (2021); Sudan (2022); Togo (2021); Ukraine (2023); United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland (2023); Uruguay (2021); Uzbekistan (2023); and Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of) (2022).
The bureau of the Council at its forty-eighth session is made up of the President, Nazhat Shameem Khan (Fiji) and the following Vice-Presidents: Keva Lorraine Bain (Bahamas); Ebyan Mahamed Salah (Somalia); Yuri Borissov Sterk (Bulgaria); and Vice-President and Rapporteur Monique T.G. van Daalen (Netherlands).