Human Rights Council Session 9

Summary: The 9th session of the Human Rights Council (HRC) will be held from 8 until 24 September 2008 (to be confirmed) at the Palais des Nations in Geneva,in Room XVII.




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Child Rights at the Human Rights Council 41

Child Rights at the Human Rights Council 40

Child Rights at the Human Rights Council 39


NGO participation

Guidelines for submitting written statements

Information note for NGOs (8 August 2008)

Draft programme of work & timetable:

The draft timetable of the session is expected to be discussed at the organisational meeting of the Human Rights Council to be held on August 22nd. It will be drawn from the annual programme of work, already available on the HRC Extranet.

Documents for the Human Rights Council’s 9th Session will shortly be available on the relevant OHCHR webpage.

The Secretariat strongly encourages NGOs to consult the Extranet, as well as the OHCHR website on a regular basis, as they will soon be updated with information relating to the organisation of the 9th session of the Human Rights Council.

NGO written statements:

NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC may submit written statements relevant to the work of the Human Rights Council (in accordance with paragraphs 36 and 37 of ECOSOC resolution 1996/31).

The HRC Secretariat wishes to draw the attention of NGOs to ECOSOC resolution 1996/31, which authorises written statements of: a) 2,000 words for NGOs in general consultative status; and b) 1,500 words for NGOs in special consultative status and on the roster.

NGO written statements are to be submitted in accordance with the guidelines for the submission of NGO written statements:

NGOs may submit their written statements to the Council Secretariat electronically to

The deadline for the submission of written statements is Monday 25 of August. The Secretariat will not be able to ensure the timely circulation of written statements late in submission.


NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC wishing to accredit representatives to the 9th session of the Human Rights Council are invited to send their letter of accreditation request/s to the Secretariat of the Council as of 25 August by fax, to the attention of the accreditation officer, who can be reached at:

Until 5 September:
Fax: +41 (0)22 917 90 11

Contact information (phone, fax, room number) of the accreditation officer in place during the session will be communicated at a later stage.

The letter requesting accreditation should contain the following elements:

  • It should be submitted on the official letterhead of the organisation;
  • It should clearly state the title and duration of the session the organisation wishes to attend, e.g. “Name of NGO, in consultative status with ECOSOC, wishes to send the following members to attend the 9th session of the HRC"
  • It should also indicate the name/s (first name and family name) of the person/s who will represent the organisation at the HRC session:
    o Names of persons must appear exactly as they appear in the ID document,
    o Family Name(s) have to be capitalised.
  • Only for NGOs in consultative status with ECOSOC] Ensure that the name(s) of those representative(s) of the NGO already in possession of a valid identity badge issued by the United Nations Office in Geneva (UNOG) Security and Safety Section, and who plan to attend the 2008 Social Forum, are also included in the accreditation request, with an indication that the person(s) holds an annual badge.
  • (e) Be signed by the President or the main representative(s) of the organisation.

Once in Geneva, participants may then proceed to the accreditation office at the “Pregny Gate” security entrance (8-14 avenue de la Paix). Upon presentation of personal identification and a copy of the accreditation request from the concerned NGO, the accreditation officer will issue a photo-badge granting access to the Palais des Nations. This badge will remain valid for the duration of the session, and will permit the badge-holder unrestricted access to the conference rooms.

The accreditation office of the Human Rights Council will be open from Monday to Friday from 8.00 a.m-5.00 p.m. throughout the session.

NGO parallel events:

As under the arrangements and practices observed by the HRC in its former sessions, NGOs duly accredited to the 9th session of the HRC will be able to organise parallel events of relevance to the work of the Human Rights Council, taking into account availability of rooms.

Room booking requests must be received by 25 August 2008 by the Secretariat, and will be processed on a first come first serve basis, subject to availability of rooms. All requests should be sent by fax to:

Until 5 September:
Fax: + 41 (0) 22 917 90 11
Tel: + 41 (0) 22 917 96 41

Contact information (phone, fax, room number) in place during the session will be communicated at a later stage.

NOTE: Also be advised that NGOs wishing to co-sponsor an NGO parallel event should fill the relevant ‘Co-sponsorship Form’ which is also attached to the email. The Secretariat will rely only on the information contained in the co-sponsorship forms for the preparation of the relevant Bulletin of Informal Meetings annexed to the Order of the Day.

The NGO in charge of organising the parallel event may invite guests not accredited to the HRC session to be present at their meeting. The concerned NGO is requested to provide the HRC Secretariat, with a complete list of its guests at least 48 hours prior to the day of the meeting. Accordingly, "Parallel Event" photo-badges will be issued on the day of the scheduled event, at the "Pregny Gate" security entrance, upon presentation of a valid identification paper.

Please be advised that the Secretariat does not provide interpretation for NGOs' parallel events. NGOs may bring their own interpreters, if they so wish, and inform the HRC Secretariat accordingly ahead of time. It is reminded that the use of cameras/videos during parallel events is not encouraged. Only journalists and camerapeople accredited on a yearly basis with UNOG are allowed to use camera and video equipment.

NGO Liaison Office:

During the upcoming 9th session of the Human Rights Council and the lead-up to it, OHCHR's NGO Liaison Officer, Ms. Laura Dolci-Kanaan, will be in charge of facilitating the participation of NGO representatives in the work of the Council. Note the following contact details
· Ms. Laura Dolci-Kanaan, e-mail:, Tel: +41 (0)22 917 9656 (until 5 September)
· • Ms. Nathalie De Nul (intern), e-mail:,, Tel: +41 (0)22 917 9754 (until 5 September)

Contact information, as well as the NGO liaison office location accessible during the session will be communicated at a later stage.

A further update NGO information note will follow.


Special Procedures

Read the full list of the new Special Procedures mandate holders here

Among the new appointments, note that:

  • Ms. Raquel Rolnik (Brazil) is the new Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living,
  • Ms. Najat M’jid Maala (Morocco) is the new Special Rapporteur on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography,
  • Mr. Olivier de Schutter (Belgium) is the new Special Rapporteur on the right to food
  • Ms. Gulnara Shahinian (Armenia) is the new Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences

Find out more about Special Procedures

Special Procedures: Facts and Figures 2007

Summary of the 2008 Special Procedures Country Visits


Sources of information

CRIN - sign up to the special HRC CRINMAIL.

Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights - Press releases are issued by the HRC on a daily basis during HRC sessions and are available on the OHCHR website. In addition, relevant documents are posted on the Human Rights Council extranet (sign up).

Relevant and updated information on the 5th session of the HRC will be regularly posted on the HRC Extranet. Username: hrc extranet - Password: 1session.

A live Webcast service will be available under the Council’s webpage, covering the plenary session online, and will be accessible through this link.

Civil society news and perspectives are available on the CONGO website (Conference of NGOs in consultative relationship with the UN) and the International Service for Human Rights (ISHR) - ISHR: Human Rights Council daily updates

UN - FAQs about the Human Rights Council 


Working Group for the HRC

The Working group for the Human Rights Council, of the NGO Group for the Convention on the Rights of the Child, brings together NGOs willing to promote the rights of the child at the United Nations Human Rights Council.

The WG’s aim so far has been to ensure that the Human Rights Council addresses the specific rights and situations of children worldwide in its regular work and sessions on human rights. By advocating for the inclusion of its concerns into the Council's Resolutions, the NGO community has ensured better support and coherence between international politics and local realities affecting the realisation of children's rights.

The WG was active during the negotiations on the creation of the Human Rights Council and during consultations on the first session of the Council.

It produced a call for action in May 2006, calling on the Human Rights Council to act on four specific child rights issues: violence against children - sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography - children affected by armed conflict and displacement - children in conflict with the law. The  Call for Action was updated last November.


Universal Periodic Review (what is this?)

The first session of the Working Group on UPR was held from 7 to 18 April 2008 in Geneva, at Palais des Nations. The second session will be held from 5 to 19 May. A special webpage has been launched on the OHCHR website (internet): 

CRIN has produced a special information page on the UPR: and will soon be distributing a UPR tookit produced by the Working Group.

We have also produced reports on child rights in the submissions for the first and second session.


Useful contacts

For more information about the Working Group for the Human Rights Council, contact:
Cecile Trochu, co-Convenor 

or Jennifer Grant, co-Convenor
Save the Children UK

Any other enquiries:
Child Rights Information Network (CRIN)
c/o Save the Children, 1 St. John's Lane, London EC1M 4AR, UK
Tel: + 44 (0)20 7012 6866; Fax: + 44 (0)20 7012 6963


    Please note that these reports are hosted by CRIN as a resource for Child Rights campaigners, researchers and other interested parties. Unless otherwise stated, they are not the work of CRIN and their inclusion in our database does not necessarily signify endorsement or agreement with their content by CRIN.