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50th Session of the Human Rights Council: High level commemorative event, achievements and lessons learned

High level commemorative event on the occasion of the 50th session of the Human Rights Council: achievements and lessons learned

Statement by Iceland on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic Countries (NB8)

15 June 2022

I have the honour to deliver this statement on behalf of the Nordic-Baltic countries:  Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Norway, Latvia, Lithuania, Sweden and my own country Iceland.

As we commemorate the 50th session, we reflect on the Council’s successes, challenges and opportunities.

Overall, the HRC is a success. It has shown its relevance and ability to respond to crises through rapidly established Commissions of Inquiry.

The adoption of the resolution on prevention (45/31) was a milestone. The HRC is perfectly placed to prevent serious human rights situations from deteriorating further.

The HRC architecture is working. The special procedures publish bold and timely reports. UPR provides valuable recommendations to improve human rights nationally.

However, ensuring adequate and predictable funding is key. We must make sure that mandates established by the HRC get the necessary funding and expertise.

Our discussions are often subject to deep polarization. We need to build bridges and seek compromise. We need to work on civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights at the same pace, always putting the individual at the centre. Civil society and human rights defenders play a crucial role, as well as national human rights institutions.

We have a strong normative framework, but the implementation gap is too large. We can all do more at home to implement the human rights that we call for in this room. 

Finally, we would like to thank the High Commissioner for her tireless efforts for human rights during her mandate.

Thank you.

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