The United Nations Human Rights Council today adopted a resolution put forward by Norway entitled «Mandate of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders». 79 States from all regions have cosponsored the resolution so far. The resolution renews the mandate of the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders - an independent international human rights expert - for a period of three years. The resolution also welcomes the work carried out by the outgoing Special Rapporteur, Ms Margaret Sekaggya, and strongly urges all States to take concrete steps to create, in law and in practice, a safe and enabling environment in which human rights defenders can operate free from hindrance and insecurity.
In his presentation of the text at today’s session at the UN, Norway’s Ambassador, HE Steffen Kongstad, expressed concern over the situation for Human Rights Defenders around the world, while highlighting the broad, cross regional support Norway enjoyed for this initiative during the negotiations: 'In light of our serious concern over the situation for human rights defenders in many places in the world, it is encouraging that 79 countries have already co-sponsored this important mandate renewal resolution,' said Ambassador Kongstad. The full statement can be found here. For further information about the work of the special rapporteur we refer to the web-page of the OHCHR.
Read the full renewing of the resolution here.
Read the Norwegian Minestry of Foreign Affairs' news story here.