United Nations

Each year, FIDH guides over 60 human rights defenders and representatives of its member organizations through the maze of United Nations human rights bodies and mechanisms, including the Human Rights Council (as well as its Universal Periodic Review and special procedures), the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), and treaty monitoring bodies. Acting on its own behalf, FIDH also interacts with the UN human rights system on a daily basis through, inter alia, advocacy and lobbying work and submission of reports and information to relevant stakeholders.

FIDH’s UN advocacy program aims at enhancing the participation of civil society from all over the world in the UN human rights system in order to:
- Strengthen civil society’s capacity to utilize, and interact with, UN human rights bodies and mechanisms;
- Inform decision-making bodies, diplomats and state representatives, UN officials, independent experts and non-governmental organizations about the human rights situation on the ground;
- Influence the agenda of UN human rights bodies and the various documents and resolutions they adopt on country situations and thematic issues;
- Increase the monitoring capacity and protective role of the UN human rights system through timely and appropriate responses to human rights crises and patterns of violations and abuses; and
- Ultimately, boost local change and human rights progress through legislative, policy and societal changes.

  • Human Rights Council

    FIDH has been involved in the work of the Human Rights Council (HRC) since 2006, when it succeeded the late Commission on Human Rights. The advocacy work conducted by FIDH at the HRC covers both country situations (in particular, closed countries and situations of human rights crises) and thematic issues, such as human rights defenders, the right to privacy, freedom of expression, business and human rights, etc. It is based upon three ideas:

    - Bringing the voices of civil society, human rights defenders and victims of human rights violations and abuses from around the world to the HRC has an inherent value. Within the HRC, civil society space must be protected, claimed and expanded;

    - Advocacy and lobbying conducted by FIDH in its own name and with its member and partner organizations contribute to shaping the agenda of the HRC and influencing the contents of the resolutions it adopts, which can be powerful tools to bring about progress at the national, regional and global levels; and

    - Civil society’s capacity to contribute to shaping the responses articulated by the HRC to patterns of human rights violations and situations of human rights crises must be strengthened, including its capacity to raise awareness and to formulate proposals on actions to be taken by the Council, in particular to protect victims of violations and abuses, human rights defenders and civil society organizations.

    FIDH’s work at the HRC is based on advocacy materials (letters to states and UN institutions, advocacy notes, position papers, reports, etc.), oral statements delivered before the Council, and “side events” organized in parallel to HRC sessions, in addition to reaching out to state representatives and providing relevant information to UN officials and independent experts.

  • Security Council