Event information

1 December 2021, 10:00-11:30
Register start 19 November 2021
Register end 30 November 2021

Minority Issues and Universality

Human Rights Conversations

Traditional dresses Traditional dresses

Universality – i.e. the notion that international human rights law protects all individuals worldwide – has been a key principle of that legal framework since it was enshrined in the preamble of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. However, neither states nor scholars have ever ceased challenging this principle, on both normative and political grounds.

An ongoing research project at the Geneva Academy aims at taking stock of and contributing to a better understanding of the various criticisms while also questioning their validity. From a thematic perspective, it notably focuses on the relevant practice and associated discourse, in multilateral fora, around minority issues.

Ahead of the Fourteenth Session of the Forum on Minority Issues, and forming an integral part of the above-mentioned research project, this Human Rights Conversation thus aims at exploring how measures aimed at the effective protection of minorities and vulnerable groups could take into consideration the seemingly competing narratives between collective rights (the so-called 3rd generation of human rights) and individual rights. In other words, panelists will reflect on the principle of universality of human rights – and associated challenges – in specific relation to the advancement of minority issues at the United Nations.

Moderation

  • Felix Kirchmeier, Executive Director, Geneva Human Rights Platform

Panelists

  • Dr Alexandra Grey, Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Faculty of Law, the University of Technology Sydney
  • Yannis Fotakis, Human Rights Expert, Permanent Mission of Austria to the United Nations in Geneva
  • Dr Fernand de Varennes, United Nations Special Rapporteur on minority issues
  • Professor Joshua Castellino, Executive Director, Minority Rights Group

About Human Rights Conversations

Human Rights Conversations are a series of events, hosted by the Geneva Human Rights Platform, aimed at discussing contemporary issues and challenges related to the promotion and protection of human rights in Geneva and beyond.

Video

Minority Issues and Universality

This Human Rights Conversation discussed how measures aimed at the effective protection of minorities and vulnerable groups could take into consideration the seemingly competing narratives between collective rights (the so-called 3rd generation of human rights) and individual rights. Panelists notably reflected on the principle of universality of human rights – and associated challenges – in specific relation to the advancement of minority issues at the UN.

 

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

Keyboard with helpdesk News

New Paper Discusses the Establishment of a Global Helpdesk on Business and Human Rights

11 December 2023

Our new Research Brief discusses the proposal to establish a global helpdesk on business and human rights at the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Read more

News

In Highlight: IMPACT OSS Monitoring Tool

18 September 2023

Via its DHRTTDs Directory, the Geneva Human Rights Platform provides a comprehensive list and description of such key tools and databases. But how to navigate them? Which tool should be used for what, and by whom? In this interview, Dr Domenico Zipoli helps us understand better the specificities of the September highlight of the directory: IMPACT OSS.

Read more

Event

The Recovery Channel

13 March 2024, 18:30-21:30

This one-night-only film screening of The Recovery Channel will dissect this intersection and address the human rights violations witnessed in today's mental health care system and practices.

Read more

Cells in a jail Event

Toward An International Human Right to Claim Innocence

8 March 2024, 13:15-14:45

This event will discuss and analyze the innocence gap in international law and discuss different strategies for achieving greater recognition of an international right to assert claims of factual innocence.

Read more

Open dump Training

Protecting Human Rights and the Environment

2-20 September 2024

Participants in this training course, made of two modules, will examine the major international and regional instruments for the promotion of human rights and the environment, familiarizing themselves with the respective implementation and enforcement mechanisms.

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

11-15 November 2024

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

Flyer presenting the Geneva Human Rights Platform with other publications of the Geneva Academy on display Project

GHRP Briefings

Started in January 2019

The GHRP Briefings provide an opportunity for all stakeholders to discuss the results of the United Nations (UN) Treaty Body (TB) 2020 Review and practical ways to implement change.

Read more

Un plate with Rapporteur Spécial written on it Project

Support to UN Special Procedures

Started in June 2020

Read more

Cover Page of Research Brief Publication

Environmental Human Rights as a Tool in Early Warning and Conflict Prevention The Role of the Human Rights Council

published on January 2024

Erica Harper, Baïna Ubushieva

Read more

Cover page of the Research Brief Publication

The Evolving Neurotechnology Landscape: Examining the Role and Importance of Human Rights in Regulation

published on December 2023

Erica Harper

Read more