The Slovenia Times

Slovenia starts second term on UN Human Rights Council


Slovenia was voted to be represented in the 47-member human rights body, based in Geneva, for the second time since its establishment in 2006 by the UN General Assembly in October.

The country secured a seat on the council as 18 new members were appointed, with Slovenia and Georgia being unchallenged for the two vacant seats reserved for Eastern Europe. They have taken the place of Estonia and Montenegro.

Slovenia will thus be represented in the next three years in the most important body of the UN in the promotion, enhancing and protection of human rights in the world.

Slovenia was already a member between 2007 and 2010, and will take advantage of its experience in the period to be efficient in its work in the new term, according to the Foreign Ministry.

The ministry sees Slovenia's appointment to the council for the 2016-2018 period as a recognition to the country and its diplomacy as well as the years of proactive and positive contribution to the protection and promotion of human rights.

In the new term Slovenia will pay special attention to the traditional priorities, i.e. children's rights, gender equality and women's rights, protection of vulnerable groups, education on human rights and the connection between the environment and human rights.

On the occasion of Slovenia's appointment, Amnesty International urged the country to contribute with its membership to immediate action related to human rights violations and reminded the country about its commitments regarding human rights on its own territory.

The ongoing refugee crisis is an opportunity for Slovenia to prove itself with decent and humane treatment of refugees, the NGO said, adding that Slovenia was still facing a lot of work when it comes to other issues, including the status of the erased and Roma.

Slovenian representatives on the UNHRC will take part in regular sessions three times a year, in March, June, and September. The council may also hold special session to address human rights violations and emergencies, at the request of one-third of the member states.


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