From 19 to 21 November, government officials from the Pacific region, together with the President of the Human Rights Council, Coly Seck of Senegal, and other representatives from Small Island Developing States (SIDS), will gather in Nadi, Fiji to explore ways to strengthen the participation of SIDS in the 47member Council aiming to improve human rights conditions in their countries and in the region.
The three-day workshop will bring together 24 former delegates from the 12 UN member States of the Pacific Region who have either participated in a regular session of the Genevabased Human Rights Council, or in a Fellowship Programme supported by the LDCs/SIDS Trust Fund.
The meeting provides a unique opportunity for the delegates to exchange views on their experiences at the Council and as Fellows to help translate those experiences into concrete results seen by improved human rights situations on the ground.
The workshop, which marks the first official visit of a sitting Human Rights Council President to the Pacific region since the global human rights body was established in 2006, aims to ensure that human rights concerns, challenges and opportunities regarding LDCs/SIDS are included, sustained and strategically addressed in the HRC’s agenda.
The event follows up to a similar workshop held in Georgetown, Guyana last November where Caribbean beneficiary delegates adopted the “Georgetown Declaration Towards 2022” which endeavours to enhance the participation of SIDS in the CARICOM region in meetings of the Human Rights Council, the only intergovernmental organisation responding to all human rights abuses across the globe.
To date more than 50 per cent of the action points of this Declaration have been implemented.