The United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) is a United Nations body that has 47 members elected for three-year terms on a regional group basis. The new Human Rights Council, created by the General Assembly resolution 60/251 of 15 March 2006 to replace the Geneva-based Commission on Human Rights, will seek to address violations of human rights, including gross and systematic violations, and respond promptly to human rights emergencies.
The Human Rights Council holds no fewer than three regular sessions a year, for a total of at least ten weeks. They take place in March (four weeks), June (three weeks) and September (three weeks). If one third of the Member States requests so, the Human Rights Council can decide at any time to hold a special session to address human rights violations and emergencies. In addition to Member States of the Council, non-Member States, inter-governmental organizations, national human rights institutions, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), as well as NGOs in consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) can be accredited to participate in the Human Rights Council’s sessions as Observers.
For over a month, the UN Human Rights Council held its 46th session from 22 February 2021 to 24 March 2021. Maat, along with other human rights, regional and international organizations, participated in this session with a number of written and oral interventions, to highlight the developments of the human rights situation in the Middle East and African countries, with a special emphasis on ensuring accountability and liability for human rights crimes committed in these regions.
In this light, Maat for Peace, Development and Human Rights presents this report, which provides an extensive analysis of the work of the 46th session of the Human Rights Council in light of the Covid-19 precautionary measures that has restricted assembly and, in turn, affected the work of the council. The report reviews the draft resolutions that were voted on during the session, and provides a detailed analytical vision of the council’s policy towards the participation of civil society in public discussions and informal consultations. Moreover, it covers the participation of Maat in the session’s work in addition to the recommendations it made to the Presidency of the Human Rights Council that would enhance the participation of civil society in decision-making and the protection of human rights within the work of the Human Rights Council.
English version is below