States encouraged to involve Parliaments during UPR implementation

States should involve Parliaments in the preparation of the national report and in the implementation of recommendations, according to a new resolution by the Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted during its 26th session in June 2014. Acknowledging the "crucial role that parliaments play in translating international commitments into national policies and laws", the text encourages States "to promote the involvement of parliaments in all stages of the universal periodic review reporting process, in particular through the inclusion of the national parliament as a relevant stakeholder in the consultation process of the national report and in the implementation of recommendations". The resolution also encourages "cooperation between national parliaments and national human rights institutions and civil society".

The text is a follow-up to the one adopted in March 2013 and to the Panel discussion held by the HRC on 29 May 2013. The Inter-Parliamentary Union is currently organising, in collaboration with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, regional seminars aimed at raising awareness of the work of the HRC, in particular the UPR, and to build capacities of parliaments to contribute to its work. UPR Info actively participated in the first seminar held in Bucharest, Romania, in February 2014, by presenting the opportunities for cooperation between civil society and parliamentarians.

Credit: AFP