42nd regular session of the Human Rights Council
General Debate Item 5
19 September 2019
Statement of Portugal on behalf of the Group of Friends of national mechanisms on implementation, reporting and follow-up
Thank you Mr President.
I am pleased to deliver this statement on behalf of the 28 Member-States of the group of friends on national mechanisms on implementation, reporting and follow-up, namely Angola, Bahamas, Belgium, Botswana, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Denmark, Ecuador, Fiji, Georgia, Haiti, Italy, Mexico, Morocco, Netherlands, North Macedonia, Norway, Paraguay, Republic of Korea, Seychelles, Slovenia, Sweden, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Tunisia, Uruguay and my own country, Portugal.
As outlined by the High Commissioner for Human Rights in her report HRC 41/25, NMIRFs are central to national human rights implementation efforts. We also agree with the conclusion of the UN Secretary General (report A/72/351) that “the success of States in their efforts to promote and protect human rights (…) would undoubtedly depend on national mechanisms for reporting and follow-up being in place to deal with the task of implementing recommendations and reporting on those efforts and the impact achieved, in close cooperation and consultation with national stakeholders”.
The GoF welcomes this growing recognition of the importance of NMIRF’s as a crucial human rights instrument, including as a catalyser of the prevention of human rights violations. Indeed, NMIRFs are increasingly called upon to support human rights implementation efforts and more generally at integrating human rights recommendations into the Sustainable Development Goals. Additionally, we are very pleased to note that just under half of the candidates to the HRC that have published pledges and commitments, have a commitment to establish or strengthen NMIRFs and strengthen national coordination for implementation.
Our group of countries supports the draft resolution on “Promoting international cooperation to support National Mechanisms for Implementation, Reporting and Follow-up of Recommendations”, introduced by Paraguay and Brazil under agenda item 10. We welcome the fact that, for the first time, the resolution refers explicitly to NMIRFs. We thank the support provided by OHCHR to member states, at their request, in setting up or strengthening such national mechanisms for implementation, reporting and follow-up and we encourage the continuation of such technical assistance and capacity building.
We also welcome the convening, in April this year, of a high level regional dialogue on NMIRFs in Fiji, during which Pacific Small Island States exchanged good practices and lessons learnt, and sought to identify key characteristics of effective national implementation mechanisms.
To conclude, we would like to stress the link between NMIRFs and the UPR. NMIRFs can play a very important role in the implementation of the UPR recommendations. We call on States to include recommendations on the establishment and strengthening of NMIRFs during their interventions at the UPR Working Group.