The Universal Periodic Review mechanism of the UN Human Rights Council, which came into effect in 2008, has established itself as a mechanism with huge potential and which promotes dialogue and a level playing field for all countries undergoing the review of their human rights record.
Building on the Commonwealth Secretariat’s observations and analysis of the process, and the seminars it has conducted with member states, Universal Periodic Review of Human Rights consolidates the lessons learned so far, speaking equally to the three major stakeholders in the process – to states, to national human rights institutions, and to civil society organisations.
An effective UPR mechanism will enhance the promotion of human rights across the world. It is therefore essential for the key players to understand and advance the UPR process including at the implementation phase.
This publication describes UPR, shares experiences and provides analysis of the Commonwealth countries that reported in the first year of the UPR process.
Collaborating with the Commonwealth Secretariat
Introduction to the Universal Periodic Review Process
The Universal Periodic Review as Mechanism and Process
Section I. HOW THE UNIVERSAL PERIODIC REVIEW WORKS
How the UPR Works for States
How the UPR Works for National Human Rights Institutions
How the UPR Works for Non-governmental Organisations
Section II. WHAT HAS BEEN LEARNED?
The Commonwealth Secretariat
The Experience of a Small State
What National Human Rights Institutions Can Do to Get the Most from the UPR
What Civil Society Organisations Can Do to Get the Most from the UPR
Section III. THE FIRST YEAR OF THE UPR: ANALYSIS AND SUMMARY
UPR Year One
Analysis of Topics Raised
Summary of Recommendations
1. Human Rights Council Resolution 5 ⁄ 1
2. General Guidelines for the Preparation of Information under the UPR
3. Guide to Best Practice Flowchart
4. Trust Funds
5. Information and Guidelines for Stakeholders on the UPR Mechanism
6. Different Methodologies Used by Commonwealth Countries in their National Consultation Processes
7. Ratifications of and Signatures to Key Human Rights Treaties by Commonwealth Countries in 2008
8. Composition of Commonwealth Delegations at UPR Sessions in 2008
9. Timetable of Commonwealth Countries Reporting in 2008
10. Models Applied by Commonwealth Countries in Responding to Recommendations
11. Notes on Contributors