In April 2022, various international human rights bodies will meet – some virtually – to continue their monitoring and oversight of States’ human rights practices. For more information on each of the bodies mentioned, visit the Courts & Monitoring Bodies section of the IJRC Online Resource Hub.
At the regional level, the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights and Inter-American Court of Human Rights will be in session in April. The Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) will hold a hearing this month in the case of Fedotova and Others v. Russia, which concerns authorities’ refusal to register same-sex couples’ marriage notices.
At the United Nations, the four human rights treaty bodies in session are those focused on the rights of migrant workers, enforced disappearance, racial discrimination, and torture. No UN special procedure country visits are currently scheduled for April.
Finally, the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and special procedures have issued many calls for input with deadlines in April, including for submissions related to: cultural rights and sustainable development, the impact of toxics on Indigenous peoples, the death penalty, countering disinformation, intimidation and reprisals, arms transfers, climate change and the human rights of migrants, the obligations of States and international organizations with regard to protected areas and Indigenous peoples’ rights, and the impact of COVID-19 on the right to food.
African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights
The African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) will hold its 71st Ordinary Session, virtually, from April 21 to May 13. The public portions of the agenda include discussion of the human rights situation in Africa and presentation of the activity reports of special mechanisms. Attendees may register to view specific panels or sessions via Zoom, and may also register to speak or make a statement, using the links in the announcement.
The ACHPR will also hold its 35th Extra-Ordinary Session on April 4, privately and virtually, in order to discuss complementarity between the ACHPR and its counterpart Court, as well as pending applications for observer status.
Inter-American Court of Human Rights
The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACtHR) is holding its 147th Period of Sessions from March 21 to April 8, in hybrid format. A Court delegation visited Panama from March 16 to 18 to monitor compliance with provisional measures in the case of Vélez Loor v. Panama. The Court also held virtual public hearings in the cases of Cortez Espinoza v. Ecuador, Sales Pimenta v. Brazil, Guevara Díaz v. Costa Rica, Hendrix v. Guatemala, Angulo Lozada v. Bolivia, Mina Cuero v. Ecuador, and Habbal et al v. Argentina in March. On April 4 and 5, the Court will hold a hearing in the case of Community Garifuna of San Juan and its members v. Honduras. During the session, the Court will also hold private hearings and discussions on compliance with prior judgments.
Pursuant to a request for provisional measures by the victims in the cases of Barrios Altos v. Peruand La Cantuta v. Peru, following the Peruvian Constitutional Court’s recent decision to restore a presidential pardon for former Peruvian president Alberto Fujimori, the IACtHR also held a public hearing concerning that request.
UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies
UN treaty bodies have now resumed State party reviews and in-person sessions, which had been postponed because of COVID-19. However, the in-person participation of States and civil society continues to be limited, as determined by each committee for each session. Note that the sessions are listed in reverse chronological order, based on their start date, on the Meeting and Events page of the OHCHR’s newly-redesigned website. Each treaty body’s webpage now lists its upcoming session dates midway down the page (rather than linking to that information from a sidebar). Treaty bodies’ public activities, including constructive dialogues held as part of State party reviews, will be webcast on UN Web TV.
Committee on the Rights of Migrant Workers
The Committee on the Rights of Migrant Workers (CMW) is holding its 34th Session from March 28 to April 8, in Geneva. It will hold constructive dialogues with Burkina Faso, Cabo Verde, and Paraguay concerning their implementation of the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families. The CMW will also adopt lists of issues for Uruguay, Kyrgyzstan, and Peru. According to an information note, the CMW intends to allow virtual participation in its meetings with civil society, and may decide to hold the session in a hybrid or virtual format, depending on public health conditions.
Committee on Enforced Disappearance
The Committee on Enforced Disappearance (CED) is holding its 22nd Session from March 28 to April 8. The CED will hold constructive dialogues with Greece and Niger concerning their implementation on the Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, and will adopt lists of issues for Cambodia, Gambia, and Niger. According to an information note, the CED will decide at a later date on whether to hold the reviews and meetings with civil society in person or virtually, based on the public health conditions.
Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination
The Committee on Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) will hold its 106th Session from April 11 to 29, in Geneva. The Committee will hold constructive dialogues with Cameroon, Estonia, Kazakhstan, and Luxembourg. Its provisional agenda also includes consideration of communications. The information note for civil society details the requirements for submissions and accreditation.
Committee against Torture
The Committee against Torture (CAT) will hold its 73rd Session from April 19 to May 13. The Committee will hold constructive dialogues with Cuba, Iceland, Iraq, Kenya, Montenegro, and Uruguay concerning their implementation of the Convention against Torture. Information on the format of the session or modes of civil society participation is not yet available.
The COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact the scheduling and format of supranational human rights bodies’ sessions and other activities, particularly at the regional level. The IJRC monthly overviews have detailed these changes, beginning in April 2020. For an overview of the initial changes in human rights oversight caused by the pandemic, see our July 2020 post on OpenGlobalRights.
To view human rights bodies’ past and future activities, visit the IJRC Hearings & Sessions Calendar. For more information on the various human rights monitoring bodies, visit IJRC’s Online Resource Hub. To stay up-to-date on international human rights law news, visit IJRC’s News Room.