Event information

21 October 2023, 12:00-13:15

The Practice of the UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies: Beyond International Law?

GHRP Annual Conference

A session of the UN Human Rights Committee A session of the UN Human Rights Committee
abila logo   Norwegian Centre for Human Rights     ILA Albania

This panel at the ABILA International Weekend – co-organized with the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights and the Albanian branch of the International Law Association – forms part of the 2023 Annual Conference of the Geneva Human Rights Platform that takes place in New York.

The United Nations (UN) human rights treaty bodies (TBs) main methods of work include State reporting, individual communications, and the codification of their practice through ‘general comments’ or ‘general recommendations’. This panel will critically discuss the practice of UN TBS, with a focus on general comments and recommendations, while reflecting also on concluding observations and views. The analysis highlights the main substantial and procedural controversies around them from the lens of whether the process of their adoption and the end- product can be seen as ‘beyond international law’, or as an inherent part of the process of development of international law. Equally important, the panel will provide insights on whether and to what extent the practice of UN TBs is reflected in the codification and development of international law.


  • Felix Kirchmeier, Executive Director, Geneva Human Rights Platform


  • Virgínia Brás Gomes, Former Chairperson, UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
  • Mikiko Otani, Member and Former Chairperson, UN Committee on the Rights of the Child
  • Arnold Pronto, Principal Legal Officer, Codification Division, UN Office of Legal Affairs
  • Gentian Zyberi, Professor of International Law and Human Rights, Norwegian Center for Human Rights, University of Oslo; Former Member, UN Human Rights Committee

About the Geneva Human Rights Platform Annual Conference

You can find here information about the other panels/events that form part of the 2023 Annual Conference in New York.

This annual flagship public event open to all human rights actors  – diplomats, experts, NGOs, members of UN treaty bodies, Special Rapporteurs, international organizations, National Human Rights Institutions and academics – addresses current issues and challenges in the work of Geneva-based human rights mechanisms.



This event may be filmed, recorded and/or photographed on behalf of the Geneva Academy. The Geneva Academy may use these recordings and photographs for internal and external communications for information, teaching and research purposes, and/or promotion and illustration through its various media channels (website, social media, newsletters, annual report, etc.).

By participating in this event, you are agreeing to the possibility of appearing in the aforementioned films, recordings and photographs, and their subsequent use by the Geneva Academy.


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