Taking the Discussions on the 2020 Treaty Body Review to the Next Level

Conference room in New York Conference room in New York

15 October 2019

In order to bring the substantive debates on the future of United Nations (UN) treaty bodies (TBs) from Geneva to the political discussions in New York, the Geneva Human Rights Platform (GHRP) held with the Permanent Missions of Costa Rica and Switzerland a side event at the UN General Assembly (UNGA) in New York.

Before some 50 delegations, panelists addressed issues around the 2020 TB review.

Bringing the Geneva Expertise to New York

The Swiss Ambassador Jürg Lauber opened the event by underlining the importance of linking Geneva and New York. He recognized the ‘non-paper’ prepared by the Geneva mission of Costa Rica and supported by 44 states as an important contribution to the process and as a solid starting point for further intergovernmental deliberations in New York.

Hilary Gbedemah, president of UN TBs chairpersons recalled, along with Elena Kountouri from the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the progress made by UN TBs since 2014 to strengthen and align their procedures.

Key stakeholders, including OHCHR and NGOs, completed the GHRP inputs on the 2020 TB review.

‘As the political process on the 2020 review will, over the coming months, move from Geneva to New York, it was important to present to New York-based diplomats the expertise built-up in Geneva within TB membership, OHCHR, civil society and academia. This will also encourage New York missions to solicit input from their colleagues in Geneva, which does not happen as automatically as one should think’ highlights Felix Kirchmeier, Executive Director of the GHRP.

Next Steps

Following this public event, the GHRP will stay in close contact with the New York missions of Costa Rica and Switzerland and other interested actors in New York to feed more specific points into the discussions, focusing on an outcome resolution of the 2020 TB review process.


Portrait of Sonali Wanigabaduge News

MAS in Transitional Justice, Human Rights and the Rule of Law: What our Students Say

6 January 2020

In this interview, Sonali Wanigabaduge, who is enrolled in our Master of Advanced Studies (MAS) in Transitional Justice, Human Rights and the Rule of Law, tells us about the programme and life in Geneva.

Read more

Portrait of Alexandre Arregui in front of Villa Moynier News

Our New Visiting Fellow: Alexandre Zielinsky Arregui

13 January 2020

During his time at the Geneva Academy, Alexandre will investigate how stolen and looted cultural objects from conflict zones, or objects that have been hidden as spoils of wars, find their way into the mainstream international art and antique market via the regulated financial markets.

Read more


Right On: Access to Information and the Safety of Journalists in Times of Crisis

4 June 2020, 16:00-17:30

Join us online to discuss challenges for the right to access to information in times when most governments need to come up with strategies to mitigate the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Read more

A farmer in her field, DRC Training

The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Peasants

7-11 December 2020

From its adoption to its content and implementation, this training course provides a comprehensive overview of the United Nations Declaration on the rights of peasants, as well as tools to protect and promote the rights of peasants, rural women, fisher, pastoralist and nomadic communities, as well as agricultural workers.

Read more

A general view of participants during of the 33nd ordinary session of the Human Rights Council. Training

The Universal Periodic Review and the UN Human Rights System: Raising the Bar on Accountability

2-6 November 2020

This training course will explore the origin and evolution of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) and its functioning in Geneva and will focus on the nature of implementation of the UPR recommendations at the national level.

Read more

A session of the UN Human Rights Committtee at Palais Wilson Project

Implementing International Humanitarian Law Through Human Rights Mechanisms

Started in April 2019

Resulting from traditional legal research and informal interviews with experts, the project aims at examining how – if at all possible – IHL could be more systematically, appropriately and correctly dealt with by the human rights mechanisms emanating from the Charter of the United Nations, as well from universal and regional treaties.

Read more

Cover page of the Annual Report 2019 Publication

Annual Report 2019

published on May 2020

Read more