UN Conference on Human Rights of Victims of Terrorism

The Conference on the Human Rights of Victims of Terrorism took place on 11 February 2016 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York.

The Conference was organised by the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Centre (UNCCT) under the auspices of the Counter-Terrorism Implementation Task Force (CTITF) Working Group on Supporting and Highlighting Victims of Terrorism and in collaboration with the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism.

The objectives of the conference were to raise awareness on the rights of victims of terrorism and to examine how States can strengthen their national legislation, procedures and practices to better protect and support victims, their communities and their families. It brought together government representatives and experts from academia, civil society, international and regional organizations as well as victims associations.

The conference took place within the framework of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy, which recognizes the importance of protecting, supporting and showing solidarity with victims of terrorism. As June 2016 will mark the 10th anniversary of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy and its fifth review, the discussions of the conference should feed into the deliberations related to this landmark document.

The discussions also reflected on the report on the “Framework Principles for Securing the Human Rights of Victims of Terrorism” (A/HRC/20/14) by the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism. The report puts forward a set of 14 recommendations for Member States to uphold their international obligations in this regard.  

In addition, the conference looked into the role that victims can play in preventing the spread of terrorism.

The CTITF was established in the Department of Political Affairs to support Member States’s implementation of the Global Counter Terrorism Strategy. It organizes its work through eleven working groups in order to foster coordination and coherence. The UNCCT was established within CTITF in 2011 in order to provide capacity building for Member States and regional organizations to support the implementation of all four Pillars of the United Nations Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy.

Key Documents