The 52nd Session of the Human Rights Council

27 February – 4 April 2023

Item 10: General Debate 2nd April 2023

Joint Statement with the International Organization for The Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD) and Geneva International Centre for Justice (GICJ)

Thank you, We welcome the Report of the Board of Trustees and all the work that goes into technical cooperation missions worldwide. We note the frustrations raised by the Board about some aspects, including sharing of best practice across teams - and the need for greater capacity within the OHCHR to better link analysis with programmatic action - to close protection gaps. It is vital that States are open to taking the next steps - to increase the effectiveness of technical cooperation. It is vital that States participating today - fund this vital work properly. Capacity Building underpins why we are all here - to ensure universality of the promotion and protection of human rights - in every single country, to elevate these concerns above politics wherever we can. EAFORD and Geneva International Centre for Justice agree with the Board’s conclusion and call on all decisions on policy and programming to include the voices of marginalised peoples left behind or ignored by other politically-driven processes in certain member states. The Funds would benefit from expanding on how NGOs in Geneva and in the field can assist further in the development of a networked and effective multilateralism to respond to severe challenges in countries covered by the fund such as Yemen, but also those not currently included such as Iraq. Technical cooperation plays a vital role in protecting civil society particularly by ensuring free assembly and free expression. Civil Society works best when it works free from fear. Our collective work in this room is enhanced when NGOs can go about their vital protection work unhindered.

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