Thematic Reports

Assembly and association rights in the context of natural resource exploitation

Jun 03 2015

The global economy relies heavily on the availability and exploitation of natural resources. With that demand has come a plethora of concerns relating to the sustainability of economic growth and its impact on the climate, the environment and, more generally, on human rights. Despite the high stakes, citizen engagement in the natural resources sector is notoriously difficult. Secrecy cloaks decision-making processes and outcomes; there is a lack of mechanisms through which interested parties may express their concerns; discussions are often highly technical; and, above all, the financial stakes are often massive. This opaque and lucrative environment presents ideal conditions for corruption to thrive, a challenge with which many resource-rich countries have to contend. In this report, Special Rapporteur Maina Kiai examines the role that the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association play in opening space for genuine and effective participation across the spectrum of natural resource exploitation … Continue reading →


Tags:  extractives HRC HRC29 natural resource exploitation natural resources thematic reports

Threats against groups most at risk when exercising assembly and association rights

May 13 2014

Backlash from the Arab Spring of early 2011 continues to be felt globally, with space for civil society actors increasingly shrinking. In recent years many States have responded to people’s assertions of peaceful dissent by violently clamping down on peaceful protests and other forms of assembly, unduly restricting the ability of associations to form and operate, and physically assaulting civil society actors. While those actions have negatively affected all who exercise their rights to peacefully assemble and freely associate, certain groups are at particular risk of having their space all but vanish. In this report, UN Special Rapporteur Maina Kiai focuses on the challenges facing groups that are often relegated to the margins of society, both in their daily lives and in the exercise of their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association. He hopes to cast the spotlight on the ways in which the denial of the … Continue reading →

Tags:  at-risk groups HRC HRC26 thematic reports

Civil Society’s Right to seek, receive and use resources – human, material and financial

Apr 24 2013

Restrictions on funding have become a major existential threat to associations across the world, as governments increasingly use the financial noose as a way to silence peaceful dissent. Under international law, freedom of association encompasses not only the right to form and join an associations but also to seek, receive and use resources – human, material and financial – from domestic, foreign, and international sources. Sadly, the number of barriers to seeking such resources are increasing. This April 2013 report from UN Special Rapporteur Maina Kiai documents many examples: In Ethiopia, for instance, a law introduced in 2009 prohibits human rights associations from receiving more than 10 per cent of their overall resources from foreign sources. In Russia, a July 2012 law requires foreign-funded organizations engaging in “political activities” as so-called “foreign agents.” States are obliged to facilitate, not restrict, access to funding so that associations can effectively take part … Continue reading →

Tags:  civil society funding HRC

Best practices in promoting the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association

May 21 2012

The right of peaceful assembly covers not only the right to hold and to participate in a peaceful assemblies but also the right to be protected from undue interference. It further protects those monitoring peaceful assemblies. The right to freedom of association ranges from the creation to the termination of an association, and includes the rights to form and to join an association, to operate freely and to be protected from undue interference, to access funding and resources and to take part in the conduct of public affairs. In this report, Special Rapporteur Maina Kiai highlights best practices worldwide that promote and protect the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association, covering areas such as: • The definition of “peaceful assembly” and “association” • The presumption in favor of allowing peaceful assemblies • Notification vs. authorization of peaceful assemblies • The right to be protected from undue interference … Continue reading →

Tags:  best practices HRC

View the quotes in your language: