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Independent Expert on human rights and international solidarity

Purpose of the mandate

International solidarity is the expression of a spirit of unity among individuals, peoples, States and international organizations. It encompasses the union of interests, purposes and actions and the recognition of different needs and rights to achieve common goals.

International solidarity is a foundational principle underpinning contemporary international law in order to preserve international order and to ensure the survival of international society.

The general objective of international solidarity is to create an enabling environment for:

  • Preventing and removing the causes of asymmetries and inequities between and within States, and the structural obstacles that generate and perpetuate poverty and inequality worldwide;
  • Engendering trust and mutual respect between States and non-State actors to foster peace and security, development and human rights;
  • Promoting a social and international order in which all human rights and fundamental freedoms can be fully realized.

Read more about human rights based international solidarity.

About the mandate

The mandate of the Independent Expert on human rights and international solidarity was created in 2005 by the predecessor of the Human Rights Council, the United Nations Commission on Human Rights (see resolution 2005/55). The Human Rights Council extended the mandate for a further period of three years in 2014 (resolution 26/6), in 2017 (resolution 35/3), and in 2020 (resolution 44/11). Read more about the mandate.

Current mandate holder

Mr. Obiora Okafor, independent expert on human rights and international solidarityProfessor Obiora C. Okafor was appointed by the Human Rights Council as the Independent Expert on human rights and international solidarity in June 2017. He assumed his functions on 1 August 2017. Mr. Okafor is the York Research Chair in International and Transnational Legal Studies (Senior Tier) and a tenured Full Professor of Law at the Osgoode Hall Law School of York University, Toronto, Canada. He is also a former Chairperson of the UN Human Rights Council Advisory Committee.

Read more about Professor Obiora C. Okafor.

Key documents

Draft declaration on the right to international solidarity

PDF: English

Latest thematic reports

Populism and the threat to international solidarity: This report, presented to the 75th session of the General Assembly, examines the link between certain forms of contemporary populism and the enjoyment, or lack thereof, of human rights-based international solidarity. The negative impacts of certain forms of populism on the building and maintenance of international solidarity are emphasized in the report in order to support the realization of human rights for everyone around the world. View report page | View document: A/75/180

International solidarity and climate change: In this report, the Independent Expert engages with one of the thematic priorities that he established for his mandate, namely the enjoyment, or lack thereof, of human rights-based international solidarity in the context of climate change. View report page | View document: A/HRC/44/44

Latest country visits

Visit to Qatar (2-10 September 2019)
View document: A/HRC/44/44/Add.1 | Comments by the State: A/HRC/44/44/Add.2

Visit to Netherlands (5-13 November 2018)
View document: A/HRC/41/44/Add.2


Latest news


More press releases and statements...

Archived news
(over 3 years old)

Activities

Solidarity is the key to post-COVID-19 response - Article at openglobalrights.org
28 April 2020

United Nations Conference on South-South Cooperation
21 March 2019

Open letter to the President of the Council, in favor of the draft United Nations declaration on the rights of peasants and other people working in rural areas
29 September 2017

Videos

9 July 2020
Independent Expert on International Solidarity - 16th Meeting, 44th Regular Session Human Rights Council. Watch on UN Web TV

26 Jun 2019
Clustered interactive dialogue, Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants and Independent Expert on human rights and international solidarity, 7th Plenary Meeting at the 41st Regular Session of the HRC. Watch on UN Web TV

25 Jun 2019
Clustered interactive dialogue, Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants and Independent Expert on human rights and international solidarity, 6th Plenary Meeting at the 41st Regular Session of the HRC. Watch on UN Web TV

Former mandate holders

Ms. Virginia Dandan
(Philippines)
2011-2017

Rudi Muhammad Rizki
(Indonesia)
2005-2011


Special Procedures
Independent Expert on international solidarity
Recent thematic reports
Others involved
External links
Contact information

Mr. Obiora C. Okafor
Independent Expert on Human Rights and International Solidarity

OHCHR-UNOG, 8-14 Avenue de la Paix, 1211 Geneve 10, Switzerland
Fax: (+41-22) 928 9010
Email: iesolidarity@ohchr.org