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D. Promotion of human rights

Report of the Human Rights Council

At its resumed sixtieth session, in March 2006, the General Assembly decided to establish the Human Rights Council, based in Geneva, in replacement of the Commission on Human Rights, as a subsidiary organ of the General Assembly. It decided also that the Council should: (a) be responsible for promoting universal respect for the protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, without distinction of any kind and in a fair and equal manner; (b) serve as a forum for dialogue on thematic issues on all human rights; (c) assume, review and, where necessary, improve and rationalize all mandates, mechanisms, functions and responsibilities of the Commission on Human Rights in order to maintain a system of special procedures, expert advice and complaint procedure; and (d) complete the review within one year after the holding of the Council’s first session. The Assembly further decided that the Council should meet regularly throughout the year and schedule no fewer than three sessions per year and that it should submit an annual report to the Assembly (resolution 60/251).

At the 2nd plenary meeting of its sixty-first session, the General Assembly decided to include in the agenda of that session the item entitled “Report of the Human Rights Council”, and that the item would be considered in plenary meeting and in the Third Committee, on the understanding that the Third Committee would consider and act on all recommendations of the Human Rights Council to the Assembly, including those that dealt with the development of international law in the field of human rights (decision 61/503 A).

At its sixty-second session, the General Assembly decided that, during that session, the item would be allocated to the Third Committee (decision 62/503).

At the same session, the General Assembly endorsed the decision of the Human Rights Council to adopt resolutions 5/1, entitled “Institution-building of the United Nations Human Rights Council”, and 5/2, entitled “Code of Conduct for Special Procedures Mandate-holders of the Human Rights Council”, including the annexes and appendices thereto (resolution 62/219).

The Council is composed of 47 members (see also item 106 (c)) and since its establishment, it has held eight regular sessions and six special sessions.


References for the sixty-second session (agenda item 65)

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Source: A/63/100

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