Address/Websites


Palais Wilson. 52 rue des Pâquis. CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland

http://www.ohchr.org/EN/Pages/Home.aspx

Background


The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), guided by the mandate provided by General Assembly resolution 48/141, OHCHR represents the world’s commitment to the promotion, protection and realization of the full range of rights and freedoms set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

OHCHR has a central role in safeguarding the integrity of the three pillars of the United Nations: peace and security, human rights and development. For the four year period from 2018-2021, the Office has identified six thematic pillars, four major shifts, with person centered spotlighting particularly women, young people and persons living with disabilities. The six thematic pillars that
from
the continued solid base on which the work of the Office stands include (1) Support to the United Nations human rights system; (2) Mainstreaming human rights within the United Nations other pillars, namely development and (3) peace and security; (4) Advancing the core human rights principles of non-discrimination, (5) accountability, (6) participation. The Four major Shifts’ in OHCHR mandate focus on key threats to rights and key opportunities for leveraging support to better protect and promote rights.  This means that across our six thematic pillars, OHCHR will also work to take steps to help prevent conflict, violence and insecurity; Help protect and expand civic space; Support and further develop a global constituency for human rights; Deliver human rights in the context of emerging concerns (‘frontier issues’).

All the six areas have a strong focus on women’s human rights and gender issues, including in line with OHCHR internal policies on gender equality and the Secretary General System Wide Strategy on Gender Parity.
Institutionally, OHCHR is committed to strengthening the United Nations human rights programme and to providing it with the highest quality support. OHCHR is committed to working closely with its United Nations partners to ensure that human rights are at the center of the work of the United Nations.


Policy framework


See gender-related resolutions and decisions of the General Assembly, Security Council and Human Rights Council, and relevant subsidiary bodies.


Areas of Focus


The mission of OHCHR is to work for the protection and promotion of all human rights for all people; to help empower people to realize their rights; and to assist those responsible for upholding such rights in ensuring that they are implemented. In carrying out its mission with respect to violence against women, and within the overarching strategies to ensure country engagement, leadership, partnership, and support and strengthening of the Office and the human rights machinery, OHCHR is focusing on:
*Gender sensitive administration of justice, through the provision of expert legal analysis of international (and, where appropriate, regional and national) jurisprudence with commentary, relating to the effective prosecution of gender-based violence as well as legal analysis of obligations in relation to social and economic rights and the impact of the enjoyment of such rights for women on access to justice for victims of sexual violence.
*Piloting of integrated and thematic gender strategies for country engagement, including on violence against women.
*Mainstreaming gender and women’s human rights in OHCHR and with UN system partners.

OHCHR is an active member of UN Action against sexual violence in conflict. Since August 2008, the Coordinator for UN Action Against Sexual Violence in Conflict, previously based with UNIFEM in New York, is hosted on OHCHR premises in Geneva. Since 2009, OHCHR has chaired the Resource Management Committee of the UN-Action Multi-Donor Trust Fund.

Human rights monitoring and investigations, including in relation to sexual violence, are also key features of the field presences of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), particularly country offices and human rights components of UN peace operations.

Monitoring of the human rights situation, including advocacy and public reporting, is a fundamental tool for OHCHR to assess human rights problems, support the identification of adequate solutions, promote accountability and deter further violations. In particularly serious human rights violations including collective rape cases, the Office also conducts human rights investigations, by conducting detailed interviews with victims and witnesses, when possible visiting the location of the violations, and undertaking circumstantial analysis of facts, mapping of perpetrators to promote accountability through follow up with judiciary authorities.

OHCHR supportsthe Human Rights Council and its special procedures, including the Special Rapporteur on violence against women, its causes and consequences, the Working Group on discrimination against women in law and in practice, and the Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially in women and children, as well as human rights treaty bodies, including the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women.

In its’ work, the Committee on the Elimination on the Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) urges States parties to give priority attention to eliminating all forms of violence against women and to adopt comprehensive measures to address it in accordance with the Committee’s general recommendation No. 35.


Resources


Report on laws discriminatory to women, prepared by Dr. Fareda Banda, 2009

Commentary on the Recommended Principles and Guidelines on Human Rights and Human Trafficking
About 165 Results

The OHCHR supported the work of the Special Rapporteur on violence against women during the first week of CSW63 in March 2019. In particular, support was provided for three side-events:

  1. Side-event on 25 years of View More

The OHCHR supported the work of the Special Rapporteur on violence against women during the first week of CSW63 in March 2019. In particular, support was provided for three side-events:

  1. Side-event on 25 years of the mandate and the femicide watch initiative, co-sponsored by the Republic of Croatia;
  2. Side-event on the mandate of the SRVAW and CEDAW General Recommendation 35, co-sponsored by Timor-Leste;
  3. Side-event on online violence against women and the non-consensual distribution of intimate images, organized jointly with Facebook.

The OHCHR also supported the Special Rapporteur on violence against women in the organization of a working level meeting with the members of the institutional platform of international and regional women’s rights mechanisms created in March 2018.

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  • Feb 2017 - Apr 2018
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In Ukraine, OHCHR is part of the UN Gender Theme Group (GTG) comprising all UN agencies and was involved in the 16-days of Activism against gender-based violence Campaign as a part of the UNSG UNiTE campaign. OHCHR also contributed to the View More

In Ukraine, OHCHR is part of the UN Gender Theme Group (GTG) comprising all UN agencies and was involved in the 16-days of Activism against gender-based violence Campaign as a part of the UNSG UNiTE campaign. OHCHR also contributed to the development of the prevention of and response Plan to sexual exploitation and abuse (PSEA) released in February 2018.
In Serbia, OHCHR contributed through the UN Trust Fund to support, jointly with UNW, a local NGO projects to combat violence against women living with disabilities in closed institutions.
In Honduras, in the framework of the 16 Days of Activism OHCHR was involved on advocacy campaigns to raise awareness about the impact of gender based violence on women human rights defenders.
In Haiti, OHCHR provided support to the chair of the PSEA Task Force (DSRSG) with substantial information continued working towards the prevention of sexual abuses and exploitation.

 

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OHCHR undertook a project on mapping of women’s access to justice in non-conflict and conflict contexts by members of the Inter-Agency Network on Women and Gender Equality (IANWGE) taskforce.

OHCHR undertook a project on mapping of women’s access to justice in non-conflict and conflict contexts by members of the Inter-Agency Network on Women and Gender Equality (IANWGE) taskforce.

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OHCHR continued to work closely with the Standing Committee on Women, Peace and Security on implementation of Security Council resolution 1325 and within UN Action against Sexual Violence in Conflict and, through this network and in cooperation with View More

OHCHR continued to work closely with the Standing Committee on Women, Peace and Security on implementation of Security Council resolution 1325 and within UN Action against Sexual Violence in Conflict and, through this network and in cooperation with all relevant UN entities, has been closely involved in the development of guidance for the operationalization of SC resolutions on conflict-related sexual violence.

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OHCHR participates in the Inter-Agency Standing Committee Sub-Working Group on Gender Mainstreaming in Humanitarian Assistance. OCHA is a co-chair of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee’s (IASC) Task Force on Gender and Humanitarian Assistance. OCHA View More

OHCHR participates in the Inter-Agency Standing Committee Sub-Working Group on Gender Mainstreaming in Humanitarian Assistance. OCHA is a co-chair of the Inter-Agency Standing Committee’s (IASC) Task Force on Gender and Humanitarian Assistance. OCHA is facilitating the production of an IASC document on members’ policies in addressing gender-based violence in order to establish a coordinated programme built on the expertise and capacities of the IASC members.

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In February 2007, OHCHR formally joined the UN Action against Sexual Violence in Conflict.

In February 2007, OHCHR formally joined the UN Action against Sexual Violence in Conflict.

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OHCHR organised training activities on women’s rights and violence against women for Arab-speaking NGOs; Iraqi NGOs; judges from the United Arab Emirates; NGOs and parliamentarians from Bahrain. Gender-based violence in Sudan was also covered.

OHCHR organised training activities on women’s rights and violence against women for Arab-speaking NGOs; Iraqi NGOs; judges from the United Arab Emirates; NGOs and parliamentarians from Bahrain. Gender-based violence in Sudan was also covered.

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In Argentina, OHCHR  started supporting the process of adaptation of the Latin American Model Protocol for the investigation of gender-related killings of women (feminicide), similar actions will take place in Chile and Peru. OHCHR RO for View More

In Argentina, OHCHR  started supporting the process of adaptation of the Latin American Model Protocol for the investigation of gender-related killings of women (feminicide), similar actions will take place in Chile and Peru. OHCHR RO for Central America and UN Women Regional Office for Latin America organized workshops with the Prosecutor’s specialized Unit for adaptation of the Latin American Model Protocol. The workshop also shared the Brazil experience with the adaptation of the Protocol. Support will continue into 2017. In Chile, the Interagency Group on Gender and Human Rights co-organized a workshop with  the Ministry of Interior to discuss the different impact on women, men, girls and boys, and that women and men have different capacities to respond according to their social, economic, cultural and geographical situation and therefore differentiated answers and solutions are required.

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In Latin America, OHCHR in coordination with UNDP Regional Virtual School, finalized the design of a self-learning on-line course on the Latin American Protocol for the investigation of gender-related killings of women. The virtual course was View More

In Latin America, OHCHR in coordination with UNDP Regional Virtual School, finalized the design of a self-learning on-line course on the Latin American Protocol for the investigation of gender-related killings of women. The virtual course was successfully tested by 28 participants from the region (academia, Judiciary, Public-Attorney’s Offices, forensics, psychologists and OHCHR staff).  Related traning courses have been organised by OHCHR RGA in Panama,  in Bolivia, and other countries from the region.

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In DRC, the UNJHRO (United Nations Joint Human Rights Office) trained 37 medical doctors on sexual violence forensic expertise, 40 lawyers on the judicial assistance to victims of SGBV, 43 penal court registers’ and prosecution secretaries View More

In DRC, the UNJHRO (United Nations Joint Human Rights Office) trained 37 medical doctors on sexual violence forensic expertise, 40 lawyers on the judicial assistance to victims of SGBV, 43 penal court registers’ and prosecution secretaries  on the management and handling of SGBV files, 35 magistrates  on sexual violence and SGBV related matters as well as protection of victims and witnesses and drafting of judgments. The UNJHRO also organised 3 workshops for magistrates on feminization of justice and fight against impunity of SGBV.

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