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Speech for Human Rights Council

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Permanent Mission of Fiji to Geneva

Speech at Human Rights Council 37

 

Mr President

Fiji is proud of its engagement with the Office of the High Commissioner, and was honoured to have hosted the High Commissioner on the first ever visit by a UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to Fiji last month.

This important visit allowed us to facilitate open and frank discussions with a host of State institutions, the National Human Rights Institution and civil society groups to discuss Fiji’s achievements, gaps and challenges in advancing the human rights of all Fijians.

The High Commissioner highlighted the synergy between Climate Change and Human Rights and how these impact the lives of ordinary people of Fiji. This is an important conversation that we continue to have, especially in our capacity as the President of COP23.

The High Commissioner welcomed Fiji’s UPR commitment to ratify all nine core human rights instruments by 2020, and we recognise the important role international Conventions and Treaties have in driving national reform, particularly through the UN human rights recommendations of the special procedures and treaty bodies. In addition to this, we are also conscious of the delivery of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development with the aim of leaving no one behind.

The High Commissioner highlighted Fiji’s successful creation of spaces to include all stakeholders including civil society organisations and development partners in our call for action during the international climate negotiations. We remain committed to maintaining these spaces both internationally and domestically so that all Fijians have an opportunity to take part in matters of national interest and engage in the human rights discourse.

We also acknowledge and celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and remain steadfast in our course to protect, promote and preserve the human rights and more importantly human dignity for all Fijians.

We thank the High Commissioner for his leadership, passion, dedication and hard work in the protection of human rights for all people, helping empower people to realize their rights, and assisting those responsible for upholding such rights in ensuring that they are implemented. It has been an honour to have experienced his able leadership and we look forward to our continuous support and engagement with the Office of the High Commissioner.

 

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