Coordination Committee of Special Procedures


Coordination Committee meeting with the Secretary-General of the United Nations. © OHCHR

The Coordination Committee (CC) is comprised of six Special Procedures mandate holders. Its main function is to enhance coordination among mandate holders and to act as a bridge between them and the OHCHR, the broader UN human rights framework and civil society. The CC equally seeks to promote the standing of the special procedures system.

The Coordination Committee was established at the 12th Annual Meeting of special procedures mandate holders in 2005. The mandate of the CC has evolved since its creation, especially in respect to developments at the Human Rights Council and increasing dialogue and cooperation between mandate holders.

The CC is, among others, tasked with:

  • Enhancing the effectiveness and independence of mandate holders and facilitating their work;
  • Raising the concerns of mandate holders in discussions of the Human Rights Council, in particular ensuring that the concerns of the Special Procedures system are taken into account, and reporting on the developments and progress in this regard;
  • Proactively identifying issues of concern to groups of mandates and facilitating joint action on cross-cutting issues or issues of shared concern;
  • Exchanging information and keeping mandate holders informed of the activities carried out by colleagues;
  • Facilitating the sharing of experience concerning methods of work among mandate holders;
  • Identifying innovative ways to raise awareness about special procedures and their work;
  • Encouraging States to cooperate with Special Procedures;
  • Proposing a draft agenda for the Annual Meeting of the Special Procedures and presenting a report on its activities to the Meeting.
  • Managing the Internal Advisory Procedure to Review Practices and Working Methods


2021/2022: Victor Madrigal-Borloz (Chair), Yao Agbetse, Olivier de Schutter, Tlaleng Mofokeng, Melissa Upreti and Anita Ramasastry (ex-officio).

The Coordination Committee is elected by the Annual Meeting of Special Procedures mandate holders, which takes place each June. The Chair of the previous Coordination Committee remains on the Committee for a further year, as ex-officio member. In electing the members of the Committee, mandate holders take into account the need for regional and gender balance, as well as for an equal representation of thematic and country special procedures, to the extent possible.

+ View full list of previous Coordination Committee members

The CC is supported in its work by the Special Procedures Branch of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

III. OUTREACH (open letters, press releases and statements)

+Coordination Committee outreach archive


Annual meetings of special procedures mandate-holders have been organized since 1994. The Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference on Human Rights underlined the importance of preserving and strengthening the system of special procedures and specified that the procedures and mechanisms should be enabled to harmonize and rationalize their work through periodic meetings (Part II, para. 95). The Office of the High Commissioner was requested to organize periodic meetings among the special procedures by the Commission and Council (CHR resolution 2004/76, extended by HRC decision 2/102).

The annual meeting is also an opportunity for mandate holders to meet and exchange views with States, the Bureau of the Council, civil society/non-governmental organizations (NGOs), national human rights institutions (NHRIs), and representatives from OHCHR and other United Nations entities on issues such as follow-up to their country visits and recommendations. Participants have, whenever possible, previously also held joint meetings with Chairs of the human rights treaty bodies in Geneva during the same period.

+ Read excerpts of the reports of the annual meetings of special procedures mandate-holders in relation to the role of the Coordination Committee.


Since its establishment, the Coordination Committee discussed or took action in relation to a considerable amount of issues, including:

  • Institution-building process of the Human Rights Council: review of mandates and selection of mandate holders
  • Participation of mandate holders in regular and special sessions of the Human Rights Council
  • Special Procedures Annual Meetings: preparation of discussions on thematic issues and working methods
  • Implementation of the Code of Conduct of mandate holders
  • Working methods: Revision of the Manual of special procedures and Communications to Governments
  • Joint missions/reports
  • Interaction with Treaty Bodies, NGOs and UN/external partners
  • Briefings for Member States, regional groups and other groupings
  • Cooperation and consultations between mandate holders

For examples of activities of the Coordination Committee, click on the relevant topic below:

+ Selection and appointment procedure for mandate holders
+ Enhanced interaction between the Special Procedures and the Human Rights Council
+ Manual of special procedures 
Internal Advisory Procedure to Review Practices and Working Methods
+ Communications report
+ Contributions to the institution-building of the Human Rights Council
+Disclosure of external funds received by mandate-holders

In Focus

>Thirty-first Special Session of the Human Rights Council on the serious human rights concerns and situation in Afghanistan. Statement by Chair of the Coordination Committee, 24 August 2021

>Special Session of the Human Rights Council on the grave human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem: Joint Statement by the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the OPT and the Coordination Committee of Special Procedures, 27 May 2021
>29th Special Session of the HRC on the human rights implications of the crisis in Myanmar – joint statement by the SR Myanmar and the Coordination Committee
>Letter of the Coordination Committee to the Consultative Group on the selection process of special procedures mandate holders, 15 January 2021
>Letter of the Coordination Committee to the Consultative Group on the selection process of special procedures mandate holders, 14 December 2020
>Letter of the Coordination Committee to the Consultative Group on the selection process of special procedures mandate holders, 26 August 2020
>Statement on the occasion of Human Rights Day, experts stress that the Universal Declaration is essential for the world to recover better
> HRC urgent debate current racially inspired human rights violations, systemic racism, police brutality and the violence against peaceful protest today – joint statement by the Coordination Committee and other mandate holders.
> Letter of the Coordination Committee to the Consultative Group on the selection process of special procedures mandate holders, 26 April 2020
> COVID-19 and SP: calls and guidance for a human rights approach in addressing the crisis
> A member of the Coordination Committee presents the Annual Report of SP to the 43rd session of the HRC, 11 March 2020 - Statement / Report and 
> Letter of the Chair of the Coordination Committee to States – 10 March 2020