University of Minnesota

Ricardo Alberto Arias & Dumisani S. Kumalo, Co-Chair's Text: Draft General Assembly Resolution, Human Rights Council (1 Feb. 2006).


Co-Chair’s text - 01.02.06

Human Rights Council

The General Assembly,

PP1 Reaffirming the purposes and principles contained in the Charter of the United Nations, including developing friendly relations among nations based on respect for the principle of equal rights and self-determination of peoples, achieving international cooperation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural and humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms for all,

PP2 Reaffirming the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action and recalling the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and other human rights instruments,

PP3 Reaffirming that all human rights are universal, indivisible, interrelated, interdependent and mutually reinforcing and that all human rights must be treated in a fair and equal manner, on the same footing and with the same emphasis,

PP4 Reaffirming also that whilethe significance of national and regional particularities and various historical, cultural and religious backgrounds must be borne in mind, all States, regardless of their political, economic and cultural systems, have the duty to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms,

PP5 Emphasizing the responsibilities of all States, in conformity with the Charter, to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind as to race, colour, sex, language or religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status,

PP6 Acknowledging that peace and security, development and human rights are the pillars of the United Nations system and the foundations for collective security and well-being and recognizing that development, peace and security and human rights are interlinked and mutually reinforcing,

PP7 Recognizing the work undertaken by the United Nations Commission on Human Rights and the need to preserve and build on its achievements and to redress its shortcomings,

PP8 Recognizing also the importance of ensuring universality, objectivity, and non-selectivity in the consideration of human rights issues, and the avoidance of double standards and politicization,

PP9 Recognizing further that the promotion and protection of human rights should be based on the principles of cooperation and genuine dialogue and aimed at strengthening the capacity of Member States to comply with their human rights obligations for the benefits of rights holders,

PP10 Acknowledging that non-governmental organizations play an important role, at the national, regional and international level, in the promotion and protection of human rights,

PP11 Reaffirming the commitment to strengthen the United Nations human rights machinery with the aim of ensuring effective enjoyment by all of all human rights - civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development - and to this end, the resolve to create a Human Rights Council.


OP1 Decides to establish aHuman Rights Council,based in Geneva, in replacement of the Commission on Human Rights, as a subsidiary organ of the General Assembly. The General Assembly shall review the status within five years.

OP2 Decides that the Council will be responsible for promoting universal respect for the protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind and in a fair and equal manner.

OP3 Decides that the Council should address situations of violations of human rights, including gross and systematic violations, and make recommendations thereon. It should also promote effective coordination and the mainstreaming of human rights within the United Nations system.

OP4 Decides also that the work of the Council shall be guided by the principles of universality, impartiality, objectivity and non-selectivity, constructive international dialogue and cooperation with a view to enhance the promotion and protection of all human rights - civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development.

OP5 Decides further that the Council will, inter alia:

OP6 Decides that the Council will assume, review, and where necessary improve and rationalize, all mandates, mechanisms, functions and responsibilities of the Commission on Human Rights, in order to maintain a system of special procedures, expert advise and individual complaint procedure . The Council shall complete this review one year after the holding of its first session.

OP7 Decides that the Human Rights Council shall consist of 45 Member States which shall be elected directly and individually by secret ballots by the General Assembly by [two-thirds / simple majority] of the members present and voting. The membership shall be based on equitable geographic distribution and seats shall be distributed as follows among regional groups: African Group 12; Asian Group 13; Eastern European Group 5; GRULAC 8; WEOG 7. The members of the Council will serve for a period of three years and shall not be eligible for immediate re-election after two consecutive terms.

OP8 Decides that the membership in the Council shall be open to all Member States of the United Nations. When electing members of the Council, Member States shall take into consideration the candidates’ contribution to the promotion and protection of human rights and the voluntary pledges and commitments made thereto. When electing members of the Council, Members shall also take into account whether there are any situations that constitute systematic and gross violations of human rights or any agreed measures currently in place at the United Nations against a candidate for human rights violations.

OP9 Members elected to the Council shall be guided by the highest standards in the promotion and protection of human rights, fully cooperate with the Council, and be reviewed under the universal periodic review mechanism during their term of membership.

OP10 The Council shall meet regularly throughout the year and schedule not fewer than three sessions per year, including a main session, for a total duration of no less than tenweeks, and shall be able to hold special sessions when needed at the request of a Member of the Council with the support of one-third of the membership of the Council.

OP11 Decides that the Council shall apply the rules of procedure established for committees of the General Assembly, as applicable, unless subsequently otherwise decided by the General Assembly or the Council and also decides that the participation of and consultation with observers, including States that are not members of the Council, specialized agencies, other intergovernmental organizations, national human rights institutions as well as non governmental organizations, shall be based on arrangements, including ECOSOC resolution 1996/31, and practices observed by the Commission, while ensuring the most effective contribution of these entities.

OP12 Decides that the methods of work of the Council shall be transparent, fair and impartial and enable genuine dialogue, be result-oriented, and allow subsequent follow-up discussions to recommendations and their implementation, and allow for substantive interaction with special procedures and mechanisms.

OP13 Recommends the Economic and Social Council to request the Commission on Human Rights to conclude its work at its 62 nd session and to abolish the Commission on 15 June 2006.

OP14 Decides to elect the new members of the Council. The terms of membership shall be staggered and such decision will be taken for the first election by the drawing of lots, taking into consideration geographical regional distribution.

OP15 Decides that the elections of the first members of the Council shall take place on 9 May 2006 and that the first meeting of the Council shall be convened on 16 June 2006.

OP16 Decides that the Council shall review its work and functioning five years after its establishment and report to the General Assembly.


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