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10 Principles to guide a successful outcome of the Review of the UN Human Rights Council as it relates to the Special Procedures

May 2010

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Amnesty International
Asian Legal Resource Centre (ALRC)
Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA)
Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT)
Baha’i International Community
Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS)
Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network
Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions (COHRE)
Conectas Direitos Humanos
Franciscans International
Friends World Committee for Consultation (Quakers)
Human Rights Watch (HRW)
International Commission of Jurists (ICJ)
International Federation for Human Rights Leagues (FIDH)
International Federation of Action by Christians for the Abolition of Torture (FIACAT)
International Service for Human Rights (ISHR)
NGO Group for the CRC
World Organization Against Torture (OMCT)


The Human Rights Council (the Council) is preparing to undertake a review of its work and functioning based on a provision in the resolution which established it. The review is likely to conclude in 2011.
We expect that the Special Procedures will be discussed at length during the review of the work and functioning of the Council, and it is essential that everything possible be done to ensure that they emerge stronger from this process.

The system of Special Procedures - the independent and expert thematic and country mechanisms - are central to the operation of the Council. The Council inherited and formally “assumed” this system from the former Commission on Human Rights (the Commission) as per the General Assembly’s request that the Council “maintain a system of Special Procedures”.
Although there are welcome suggestions of an emerging consensus among member states that the review should not seek to re-open either the resolution which created the Council or those that laid out the modalities of its work (otherwise known as the “institution-building” text) in this process, we anticipate that this will not prevent efforts to constrain the effectiveness of the system of Special Procedures.

- Read the 10 principles

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