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HRC40 | Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law

40th Session of the Human Rights Council - Item 5: Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law


Room XX, Palais des Nations, Geneva, Switzerland

Delivered by Silvia Dodero, Office of the Permanent Observer to the United Nations in Geneva

Thank you, Madam Vice-President,

We thank all the speakers for their reports. My remarks will focus on the Report (A/HRC/40/65) of the Second session of the Forum on Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law.  

The International Development Law Organization (IDLO) welcomes the Report of the Chair and expresses its appreciation to the Human Rights Council, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the Inter-Parliamentary Union for the constructive and fruitful dialogue that took place throughout the Second session of the Forum.

The Second session of the Forum continued the Council’s exploration of the mutually reinforcing relationships between human rights, democracy and rule of law. It provided the opportunity to identify tangible ways to strengthen all three domains and to maximize their complementarity for greater enjoyment of human rights, robust democracies, and stronger institutions in the justice sector and other areas.

IDLO welcomed the opportunity to participate in the Forum’s plenary panel on “Parliaments working with others: is there room for more engagement?”  Through her participation in this panel, IDLO Director-General Irene Khan shared the experience from IDLO programs in countries of the ways in which parliaments can and do interact with other State institutions. IDLO provided concrete examples of the ways in which parliaments and the judiciary complement each other for the protection of human rights and rule of law, while respecting the separation of powers and their respective independent roles.

In this regard, the work of the Council’s Special Rapporteur on independence of judges and lawyers is especially relevant. We recall that judicial independence is enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, as well as in the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

We believe that the Forum provides a unique opportunity to share lessons in operationalizing human rights, democracy and rule of law, and the ways in which they mutually reinforce each other.

IDLO fully agrees with the assessment of the Chair during his presentation to the Council a few minutes ago on the value and importance of the Recommendations of the Second session of the Forum. IDLO stands ready to support implementation of the Recommendations in the areas of our competence in rule of law, access to justice, and law and development.

Finally, Madam Vice-President,

We express our gratitude to the Core Group of States – Romania, Morocco, Norway, Peru, Republic of Korea, and Tunisia -- which has spearheaded the resolutions on the Forum on Human Rights, Democracy and the Rule of Law.  IDLO has enjoyed long-standing cooperation with the Core Group with respect to the First and Second sessions of the Forum and we look forward to the Council’s deliberations and Resolution for the Third session.

IDLO welcomes the Core Group’s proposed theme of equal access to justice for the Third session of the Forum to take place in 2020 and shall remain at the disposal of the Core Group to support its efforts going forward.

Thank you for your attention.


The International Development Law Organization (IDLO) enables governments and empowers people to reform laws and strengthen institutions to promote peace, justice, sustainable development and economic opportunity.