Updates on NHRIs’ role in the protection of internally displaced persons

NHRIs’ role in the protection of internally displaced persons (IDPs) is gaining prominence:

  • ENNHRI’s Statement on the Role of NHRIs in Promoting and Protecting the Human Rights of IDPs in (Post) Conflict has been referred to by regional and international stakeholders
  • UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of IDPs has the enhancement on NHRIs’ role in IDP protection as a thematic priority
  • GP20 campaign on internal displacement is calling for signatures to the campaign statement, including from NHRIs

Follow-up to ENNHRI’s meetings and Statement on IDPs

In April 2018, ENNHRI organised two major events in Kyiv, Ukraine, aiming to deepen the understanding and raise awareness of NHRIs’ role in the protection of internally displaced persons (IDPs). Following these meetings, ENNHRI members adopted a Statement on the Role of NHRIs in Promoting and Protecting the Human Rights of IDPs in (Post) Conflict.

ENNHRI members have reported making good use of the Statement in their work. For example, one participant at the Kyiv meetings said: ‘We took it as an action plan for our NHRI’. Another commented: ‘It provides a full overview of what an NHRI should do in this area’. Several NHRIs have reported using it in the daily work of their institution and promoting an English or translated versions through online channels and various meetings with state authorities and stakeholders.

Reference to the Statement has also been made by regional and international stakeholders, including in a comment by the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights and the newsletter of the GP20 campaign, a global campaign aiming to raise awareness of internal displacement.

UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of IDPs to focus on the role of NHRIs

The role of NHRIs in IDP protection has been gaining increasing attention at the global level. In her last report to the UN Human Rights Council, the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of IDPs, Cecilia Jimenez-Damary, has included the enhancement of the role of NHRIs in the protection of IDPs as a thematic priority.

In particular, she committed to:

  • Strengthen her mandate’s engagement with NHRIs regarding IDP protection
  • Engage in a systematic way with NRHIs and their regional networks
  • Dedicate one of her thematic reports to elaborating the role of NHRIs in IDP protection
  • Hold a consultative session with selected NHRIs to examine their existing and potential roles
  • Send a questionnaire to relevant NHRIs and to collaborate with GANHRI, the Global Alliance of National Human Rights Institutions, in this regard

GP20 campaign on raising awareness of IDPs

To mark the 20th anniversary of the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement (GP20), the GP20 campaign is raising awareness of the phenomenon of internal displacement and the situation of IDPs worldwide.

Signatures to the campaign statement will be handed over to the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of IDPs for her advocacy work with government officials and others to improve access of IDPs to their rights. Sign here now to support IDPs: https://goo.gl/mD5zpn

Please share widely with colleagues, friends and family, and once you have signed, help further the reach by posting on social media: Today I took a stand for #IDPs. You can too: https://goo.gl/mD5zpn #GP20 #PreventProtectResolve