At its 19th session, the Human Rights Council adopted a decision1 to endorse the report of the Task Force, including its recommendations, on secretariat services, accessibility for persons with disabilities and use of information technology.
This decision gives the opportunity to NHRIs with “A” status GANHRI accreditation to participate in the Human Rights Council sessions through pre-recorded video messages in one of the six official languages of the United Nations, to be delivered to enhance their participation in the plenary debate under any Human Rights Council agenda item. Only the Head, Secretary General or their designated representative in possession of a written authorization may be entitled to deliver a video message.
The credentials of the NHRIs and the identity of individuals delivering the video message will be duly verified by OHCHR.
For all interventions through video messages a letter of request will have to be addressed to the Human Rights Council Secretariat or the National Institutions, Regional Mechanisms and Civil Society Section and comply with all the below requirements:
Letter submitted on official letterhead and signed by the head of the NHRI or the Secretary General;
- Indication of the HRC session concerned, agenda item an specific segment of the programme of work in which the oral statement through video-messaging will be made;
- Indication of the full name (FAMILY NAME, First name) and functional title of the person who will deliver the statement (name of the person must appear exactly as it appears in his/her passport or formal identity document) as a designated representative;
- Colour copy of the person’s passport or of formal identity document.
Rules regarding the content and technical specifications
Oral statements delivered by video message are subject to the same rules as oral statements delivered in person. The video messages are subject to the same time limits as, and should mirror as closely as possible, the oral statements delivered in person. In particular, the following rules must be strictly observed:
- The video statement must consist of a single shot of one individual delivering a statement, seated against a neutral, monochrome background;
- The camera should be focused on the person’s face, and should not move during the shot;
No symbols, flags, banners or other images are permitted in the shot, either in the background or on the clothing of the person delivering the statement.
The video statement
must include captioning. NHRIs are encouraged to consider including international sign language, to enhance participation of persons with disabilities. A transcript of the video statement must also be submitted in order to facilitate interpretation. In the absence of captioning and transcript, the video statement will not be admissible.
The transcript must be uploaded on the following link
https://nhrireg.ohchr.org/DebateRegistration (cf. paragraph on Oral statements)
The minimum technical specifications for the video are as follows:
- video resolution min 640x480 max 1024x768, frame rate 30 fps
- audio resolution 44100 Hz, 16 bits, stereo
- video encoding WMV3 (Windows Media Video 9)
- audio encoding WMA2 (Windows Media Audio 2)
- video encoding H.274
- audio encoding MP3 or AAC
Delivery of the video statement
The video statement will be projected in the room under the same conditions as an oral statement delivered in the room.
The rules of procedure and practices of the Council apply in the same manner to video statements as to all other statements.
Whenever a point of order is raised during the projection of a video statement, the President of the Human Rights Council will interrupt the intervention and address the issue in accordance with the rules of procedure and practices of the Council. The President will then resume the projection of the video statement unless a second point of order is raised or the President considers that the message infringes the Council’s rules of procedure or practices, in which case the President may interrupt the projection of the video statement.
As the speaker will not be present in the room, a written communication recalling the applicable rules of procedure and practices of the Council shall then be forwarded to the organization concerned.
The transcript of the video message will be posted on the HRC extranet along with other oral statements.
NOTE: All pre-recorded video messages together must be uploaded before 21st February 2018 to the following website: https://extranet.ohchr.org/sites/video/SitePages/Home.aspx
NHRIs wishing to participate in the Human Rights Council session through video messaging need to send a request to Ms. Cynthia Radert (email@example.com).They will then receive a username and a password to upload their video message.