Tag - Geneva ( 3 )

News | Kiai in Geneva for final Human Rights Council session as Special Rapporteur

Mar 05 2017

GENEVA – United Nations Special Rapporteur Maina Kiai will be in Geneva March 6-10 to participate in several events surrounding the 34th Session of the UN Human Rights Council. It will be his final appearance on the margins of a Council session as Special Rapporteur. On Monday, March 6, the Special Rapporteur will moderate a side event on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association in the workplace, a follow-up to his Oct. 2016 report to the UN General Assembly. Other featured speakers include Kate Gilmore (United Nations Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights), Deborah Greenfield (ILO’s Deputy Director General for Policy), Raquel Gonzalez (Director of ITUC’s Geneva Office) and Shawna Bader-Blau (Executive Director of the Solidarity Center). The event will take place from 12 to 2 pm (Geneva time) in Room XXI of the Palais des Nations, and will be live-streamed on CIVICUS's Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/CIVICUS/   The Special Rapporteur will also speak at a side-event on Tuesday, March 7, focusing on civil society and human rights defenders in Azerbaijan. The event, which is being organized by Human Rights House Foundation and a number of other organizations, will be held from 12:30 to 2 pm in Room XII of the Palais des Nations. Other panelists include Michel... Continue reading →

News | Special Rapporteur in Geneva for events surrounding 28th session of the Human Rights Council

Mar 01 2015

GENEVA – United Nations Special Rapporteur Maina Kiai will be in Geneva this week to participate in several events on the margins of the 28th Session of the UN Human Rights Council, including the launch of landmark joint guidelines on the right to freedom of association. The guidelines – which were developed by the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE-ODIHR) and the Venice Commission – are the first of their kind in the field on association rights. They were adopted and released last December, and are being officially launched on March 5. The guidelines are currently available via the OSCE-ODIHR website via this link: http://www.osce.org/odihr/132371 The guidelines offer advice and expertise on how to legislate on freedom of association-related matters in a manner consistent with international human rights standards and OSCE commitments. They also reflect evolving good state practices, and are intended to enhance awareness of the right to freedom of association in general. The Special Rapporteur and his team participated in the development of the guidelines, most notably at a consultation in Warsaw, Poland, last year that brought together experts from around the world. “International treaties merely set out broad... Continue reading →

News | Switzerland: Changes to Geneva law on demonstrations threaten basic freedoms

Mar 09 2012

United Nations independent expert Maina Kiai underscored that some proposed changes to the law on demonstrations in the canton of Geneva, Switzerland, would “unduly restrict the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and expression, which are core in any democracy.” A number of proposed changes, introduced by the new law are problematic, according to the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association. The proposed changes will be put to a cantonal referendum this weekend, on Sunday 11 March. The new law provides for a fine of up to 100,000 Swiss francs (approximately US$110,000) for anyone who, inter alia, does not request an authorization to demonstrate; does not respect the content of the authorization; or does not comply with police injunctions. “Such an amount is disproportionate, and would have a chilling effect on the enjoyment of the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of expression,” Mr. Kiai said. “The exercise of fundamental freedoms should not be subject to a previous authorization by the authorities,” the expert stressed, noting that such a provision excludes the possibility of holding spontaneous assemblies as it requires a previous authorization to hold a peaceful assembly. The proposed changes to the law on demonstrations... Continue reading →