14th International Conference of National Human Rights Institutions

 

Co-hosted by the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions, the Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights and the Danish Institute for Human Rights in cooperation with the United Nations Human Rights Office

Around 300 participants, including representatives from NHRIs, UN agencies and leading anti-torture NGOs, as well as international experts, took part in the 14th International Conference of National Human Rights Institutions, held in Copenhagen, Denmark, from 6-8 November 2023.

The conference focused on the role of NHRIs in addressing and preventing torture, was an opportunity to reaffirm individual and collective commitments to ensuring the right of all persons to freedom from torture and other forms of ill-treatment.

The Conference included panel discussions and interactive working sessions engaging the participation and contributions of all. Guest speakers from EU, UN and NGOs shared their insights with participants and engaged in discussions.

At the conclusion of the International Conference, participating NHRIs adopted the Kyiv-Copenhagen Declaration which sets out a range of practical actions that NHRIs will take as part of their promotion, prevention and protection work on torture and other ill-treatment.

“We are gravely concerned by the ongoing practice of torture and other ill-treatment across all regions of the world, as well as the repercussions that such practices have on access to justice, the effective administration of justice, the rule of law, and civic space,” the Kyiv-Copenhagen Declaration states.

NHRIs committed to a victim-centered approach in their work, “that acknowledges the experiences of victims and survivors and the harm suffered, and which seeks redress that is responsive to their needs”.

The Declaration also recognises the role of NHRIs to pay particular attention to uphold the rights of persons experiencing situations of vulnerability, who can face heightened risks of torture and other ill- treatment

GANHRI, its regional networks, and all NHRIs agreed to collaborate in mutual capacity building and sharing of experiences and knowledge to strengthen the work of NHRIs globally to prevent and address torture and other ill-treatment.

“Upholding the right of all people to be free from torture and other ill-treatment is a fundamental duty of NHRIs. In fulfilling this duty, it is vital that we focus on supporting victims and survivors of torture and working with marginalised groups who can be at risk of torture and other ill-treatment,” Maryam Al-Attiyah, GANHRI Chairperson