The High-level side event “Towards a more inclusive, representative and responsive Council” held in Geneva

25 February, 2020

On February 25, the high-level side event entitled “Towards a more inclusive, representative and responsive Council” was held on the margins of the 43rd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, organized by the representations of Armenia, Australia, the Maldives, the Netherlands and Switzerland in the UN. The speakers - Foreign Minister of Armenia Zohrab Mnatsakanyan, Foreign Minister of the Maldives Abdulla Shahid, Foreign Minister of Iceland Gudlaugur Thór Thórdarson, Foreign Minister of Seychelles Barry Faure, Foreign Minister of Sudan Omer Ismail and Marc Limon, Executive Director of the Universal Rights Group delivered remarks during the discussion.

In his remarks, touching upon his experience in the UN Human Rights protection agenda, Minister Mnatsakanyan particularly noted: “Prior to my political career, I have been involved in diplomacy for many years and dealt with human rights agenda in regional, European and UN levels. Armenia was a member of the Human Rights Commission since 2002 until the Commission’s replacement in 2007. I personally have very vivid memories of the complex process of moving the Commission up to the level of the Council. Human rights are in another dimension: we can not avoid the issue of valuing human rights”. 

Minister noted that the establishment of the Human Rights Council had an aim to depoliticize the issue, as well as to move human rights issues to a higher UN tribune.

Foreign Minister of Armenia underlined the process of Universal Periodic Review as yet another achievement in Human Rights. “We all realize the separate existence of the Human Rights and the Human Rights policy, and addressing them both is a constant challenge. Based on our experience, I would say that the process of the Review is an important work at the national level. It also has a political significance. This is the dilemma for the international community - which approaches to adopt towards the Human Rights policy to avoid compromising on the actual issues of human rights”- the Foreign Minister of Armenia noted.

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