A two day national consultation for Government Ministries on the second cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) write up began on Tuesday at the Mendana Hotel in Honiara.
The consultation is purposely to get the views of Government officials on the UPR before a Solomon Islands National UPR report is produced and submitted to the Human Rights Council Working Group in October this year in Geneva.
The Universal Periodic Review (UPR) is a unique process which involves a periodic review of the human rights records of all 193 UN Member States.
It is a significant innovation of the Human Rights Council which is based on equal treatment for all countries and provides an opportunity for all States to declare what actions they have taken to improve the human rights situations in their countries and to overcome challenges to the enjoyment of human rights.
The UPR also includes a sharing of best human rights practices around the globe.
Solomon Islands first presented its first cycle report to the Human Rights Council in Geneva on 4th May 2011.
During the interactive constructive dialogue Solomon Islands was given a set of 115 recommendations from UN member states, of which only three were not accepted. Solomon Islands will be expected to report on its progress in implementing these recommendations in this second cycle which is this year.
Speaking during the opening of the two day consultations, newly appointed Permanent Secretary for the Ministry of Home Affairs George Palua told participants that the Solomon Islands UPR National Working Committee sees the contribution from Government line Ministries as very important in the report write-up process of the UPR.
“The consultations should provide a means for the government to track its progress in terms of achieving its human rights obligations to its people.
“This is why your participation and your inputs for the next two days will play such a vital role into our country report,” Mr Palua said.
The Permanent Secretary also added that the country has made important progress with the Human Rights situation in our country in the last four years.
The Solomon Islands report will be submitted in the month of October 2015 and will be presented at the Human Right Council in early 2016.
The Consultations will begin with Government ministries before going to Civil Society Organizations and Provincial Governments.