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Published on Dec 7, 2016
International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (EAFORD)
Interactive dialogue under agenda item 3 - Report of the Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order
Delivered by Ms. Alessia Vedano
Thank you Mr. Vice-President,
We would like first of all to thank the Independent Expert on the promotion of a democratic and equitable international order for his report. Our organizations are extremely supportive of the preventive and corrective actions recommended in the report, especially with regards to the use of trade to promote human rights and social development.
The past decades have witnessed a rapid increase of adverse human rights impact following the growing number of international investment agreements, bilateral investment treaties and multilateral free trade agreements. Too often these have led to the privatization of gains and the socialization of losses (to use Mr. De Zayas’ formulation), as well as, more serious consequences, including the loss of lives and properties, irreparable harm from displacement, and environmental damage. These crimes are grave and serious and shall bear penal responsibility.
Our organizations are also concerned, as the Independent Expert has diligently pointed out, with the threat to the international order posed by foreign intervention in the internal affairs of States. The 2005 concept of “Responsibility to Protect” must not be used as a pretext to circumvent the prohibition of the use of force stipulated in the Charter of the United Nations.
In this regard, we welcome the invitation of the Independent Expert to reformulate the doctrine so that it reflects a broader duty to protect the populations from structural violence and avoid its misuse.
In conclusion, our organizations wish to join the recommendations made by Mr. De Zayas and reiterate the importance for States, governments and other entities to guarantee the protection of human rights as well as environmental safeguard at all circumstances. In this context, the Human Rights Council should encourage all States to amend existing trade agreements to adhere with human rights treaty obligations and ensure the protection of all people from politically and economically-motivated violence. The achievement of such goals would represent a milestone towards the establishment of a genuinely equitable international order.