Source: Republic of Lithuania
On 12 November, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Lithuania Linas Linkevičius took part in the high-level webinar dedicated to the 10th anniversary of the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association.
„10 years ago, the Human Rights Council adopted a consensual resolution on the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association. Over the decade, its importance has grown even further, as the challenges to these freedoms are increasing“, – the Minister said.
He noted the trends of increasing restrictions on the peaceful protests and their criminalization around the world, including in Lithuania‘s neighbourhood – in Belarus and in Russia. Global pandemic and the rising use of digital technologies bring additional challenges in ensuring human rights and fundamental freedoms.
The Minister thanked the UN Special Rapporteur Clément Nyaletsossi Voule and his predecessors for their important achievements in setting out progressive standards, providing practical assistance and engaging with civil society, and expressed Lithuania‘s commitment to continue supporting people that peacefully seek enjoyment of their rights and democratic future for their societies.
The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Czech Republic Tomáš Petříček, the EU Special Representative for Human Rights Eamon Gilmore, the UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Nada Al-Nashif and the representatives of civil society took part in the event. The Foreign Minister of Ireland Simon Coveney and the Deputy Director General of the International Labour Organization Martha Newton addressed the participants by pre-recorded video-messages.
Lithuania, together with the Czech Republic, Indonesia, Maldives and Mexico, is in the core group of countries that in 2010 presented the resolution of the Geneva-based UN Human Rights Council on Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and of Association, which established the mandate of the Special Rapporteur. Before the termination of its membership in the Human Rights Council, the US was also a part of the core group. In summer of 2019, the Human Rights Council by consensus adopted the resolution that extended the above mentioned mandate for the upcoming three years. The event that gathered around 500 participants was organized by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, the Foreign Ministries of Lithuania and the Czech Republic and the European Union Delegation in Geneva.