Suva, Fiji- The Pacific Community (SPC) in partnership with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) today launched a publication which sheds light on progress made in building a human rights culture in the Pacific.
It also identifies gaps and opportunities to advance priority human rights issues confronting the Pacific.
While it is not a detailed review or in-depth analysis of all laws, policies and practices of human rights by Pacific governments, it builds on an earlier publication by the United Nations Human Rights Office titled, Human Rights in the Pacific; Country Outlines.
Developed with funding from the European Union, the publication provides legislators, policy makers, academics, government and those interested in human rights in the Pacific with a resource and evidence-base to inform ongoing work.
All Pacific countries have now completed two cycles of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) - a unique process which reviews the human rights records of all United Nations member states. During these UPR reviews, most human rights issues covered in this publication were raised in discussions and captured in reports submitted to the UPR Review by other stakeholders including civil society organisations and United Nations agencies.
The 16 Pacific countries covered in the report are: Australia, Cook Islands, Kiribati, Fiji, Federated States of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, Nauru, New Zealand, Niue, Palau, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tonga, Tuvalu and Vanuatu.
SPC, through its Regional Rights Resource Team, supports all 22 Pacific Community island members in building a culture of human rights, and assists nation states to commit to, and observe, international human rights standards.