Members of the UN Human Rights Council in 2021

un human rights council members 2021

Introduction to the 2021 Members of the UN Human Rights Council.

Selection process for members of the UN Human Rights Council and various roles:

Selection of all members must be decided by fair elections and all members must equally promote and protect human rights.

An overview of the history and purpose of the UN Human Rights Council.

UN Human Rights Council is composed of 47 member states.

un human rights council members 2021

The UN Human Rights Council is composed of 47 member states.

Membership is based on an equitable geographic distribution, with 47 seats distributed among respective regional group including:

  • Africa: 13 seats
  • Asia Pacific: 13 seats
  • Latin America and the Caribbean: 8 seats
  • Western Europe and other states: 7 seats
  • Eastern Europe: 6 seats

How members of the UN Human Rights Council are chosen

On October 13, 2020, the newly elected General Assembly elected 15 members.

  • China
  • Cote d’Ivoire (Ivory Coast)
  • Cuba
  • France
  • Gabon
  • Malawi
  • Mexico
  • Nepal
  • Pakistan
  • Russian Federation
  • Senegal
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom
  • Uzbekistan

In accordance with paragraph 7 of General Assembly resolution 60/251, the Council shall consist of 47 Member States, which shall be elected directly and individually by secret ballot by the majority of the members of the General Assembly.

The membership shall be based on equitable geographical distribution, and seats shall be distributed as follows among regional groups:

Group of African States (13)
Group of Asia-Pacific States (13)
Group of Eastern European States (6)
Group of Latin American and Caribbean States (8)
Group of Western European and other States (7)
The members of the Council shall serve for a period of three years and shall not be eligible for immediate re-election after two consecutive terms.

Reference : Elections and Appointments – United Nations”

Members are elected by the general council through direct secret ballot voting where a majority result must be reached for selection.

Members of the UN Human Rights Council serve a three year term and are not eligible for consecutive re-election.

The term for elected members commences on the first of January.

An absolute majority of a minimum (97) votes by the General Assembly through individual and direct voting is required.

Voting is secret and elections are held every year.

Role of members

A candidate member state’s track record and ongoing, commitment to the promotion, contribution and protection of human rights through their voluntary pledges to uphold as much is taken into consideration when votes are cast to select members of the council.

New members pledge their commitment in working with the UN Human Rights Council to maintain the highest standards in advancing the promotion and protection of human rights.

Members of the UN Human Rights Council will be vetted under the Universal Periodic Review mechanism during the term.

The Council conducts periodic reviews of member states to track progress of the fulfillment of human rights obligations and commitments, ensuring equal treatment of all UN Member States.

UN Human Rights Council Members in 2021

un human rights council members 2021

These are the members of the 2021 UN (Human Rights) Council:

New members assume their role on the first of January every year.

For example, members with terms expiring in 2021 will be replaced by newly elected members on (January 1st, 2022).

Reference:“Current members of the Human Rights Council from January 1 to December 31, 2021 by regional groups ” – OHCR.org”

President of the Human Rights Council for the 15th cycle (2021)

The President of the Human Rights Council for 2021 is Nazat Shamim Khan.

Khan has been Fiji’s Permanent Representative to the UN Office in Geneva since 2014 and was elected as the 2021 President of the Human Rights Council on January 15, 2021.

Upon her election, she emphasized her commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights, stating the following:

It is a great honour to be elected President of the Human Rights Council, and I express my gratitude to all its members for entrusting me with this task. I commit to doing my best, and I look forward to working with all stakeholders in ensuring that this year is a success, not only for the work of this Council, but also for the promotion and protection of human rights for all people.

Reference:”Human Rights Council President of the 15th Cycle (2021) – OHCR.org”

African Nations

The African contingency to the council for 2021 comprises the following thirteen member states.

Member state Tenure Expiry
Burkina Faso -2021
Cameroon -2021
Cote d’Ivoire (Ivoiry Coast) -2023
Eritrea -2021
Gabon -2023
Libiya -2022
Malawi -2023
Mauritania -2022
Namibia -2022
Senegal -2023
Somalia -2021
Sudan -2022
Togo -2021

Latin America and the Caribbean

The Latin America and Caribbean region’s contingency to the council for 2021 comprises the following eight member states.

Member State Tenure Expiry
Argentina -2021
Bahamas -2021
Bolivia (Plurinational State of) -2023
Brazil -2022
Cuba -2023
Mexico -2023
Uruguay -2021
Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of) -2022

Asia Pacific

The Asia Pacific region’s contingency to the council for 2021 comprises the following thirteen member states.

Member State Tenure Expiry
Bahrain -2021
Bangladesh -2021
China -2023
Fiji -2021
India -2021
Indonesia -2022
Japan -2022
Marshall Islands -2022
Nepal -2023
Pakistan -2023
Philippines -2021
South Korea -2022
Uzbekistan -2023

Western Europe and other states

Western Europe and other states’ seven member state contingency for 2021 comprises the following members for 2021.

Member State Tenure Expiry
Austria -2021
Denmark -2021
France -2023
Germany -2022
Italy -2021
Netherlands -2022
United Kingdom and Northern Ireland -2023

Eastern Europe

Eastern Europe’s six member state contingency for 2021 comprises the following members for 2021.

Member State Tenure Expiry
Armenia -2022
Bulgaria -2021
Czech Republic -2021
Poland -2022
Russian Federation -2023
Ukraine -2023

What is the UN Human Rights Council?

un human rights council members 2021

The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) is one of the permanent councils under the United Nations General Assembly.

The council was established in 2006 with the purpose of improving human rights issues worldwide by periodically reviewing the conditions of human rights in UN member states.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is responsible for the secretariat function.

The Human Rights Council is an inter-governmental body within the United Nations system made up of 47 States responsible for the promotion and protection of all human rights around the globe.

It has the ability to discuss all thematic human rights issues and situations that require its attention throughout the year. It meets at the UN Office at Geneva.

Reference:”​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​United Nations Human Rights Council – OHCHR”

History of the UN Human Rights Council

In order to further tackle and achieve results on the human rights front, the United Nations Human Rights Council was formally established on March 15th, 2006 by a resolution of the United Nations General Assembly and began operations on June 19th, 2006.

These included a universal periodic review mechanism to help assess the human rights situation in all UN member states as well as an advisory committee to serve as a think tank for the Council.

This allows individuals and organizations to bring human rights violations to the attention of the Council.

The Human Rights Council also works with the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council (independent experts), a body established by the former Commission on Human Rights and now taken over by the Council.

These consist of special rapporteurs, special representatives, independent experts, and working groups that monitor, investigate, advise, and publicly report on the conditions of human rights in specific countries.

Resolving Global Human Rights Issues

un human rights council members 2021

The UN Human Rights Council consists of 47 member states,with membership determined by fair elections.

All members must be committed to the promotion and protection of and the resolution of human rights issues occurring throughout the world.

Fair elections to elect members to a three-year term occur annually.

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