In an intervention at the United Nations this Tuesday, the Executive Secretary of the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) defended the need for greater cooperation between the two organizations in the field of human rights.
For Ambassador Francisco Ribeiro Telles, closer cooperation between the two organizations means greater involvement of the CPLP and its member states in the work of the Human Rights Council, but also support for legislative and training efforts to create and strengthen national human rights institutions in all countries of the organization.
“We know that human rights challenges have no frontiers and that is why the CPLP has strengthened its excellent relationship with the United Nations and its organizations, which take place every two years at the United Nations General Assembly. This resolution is reflected and this cooperation is invalid, ”said the diplomat in his speech at the 46th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
Therefore, the organization intends to “work on strengthening and training institutions in the field of defense and promotion of human rights, including the reporting mechanisms resulting from international human rights treaties and the general periodic review,” he said.
As an example, Ribeiro Telles highlighted “because of its particular relevance” the work carried out by the Network of Ombudsmen, National Commissions and other national human rights institutions under the CPLP and “the progress made in the field of international humanitarian law” “.
The ambassador also drew attention to other examples of cooperation with UN agencies, such as cooperation with the FAO [Organização das Nações Unidas para Alimentação e Agricultura] within the framework of the Community’s strategy for food security, “based on the consecration of the human right to adequate nutrition”.
He also referred to the campaigns to combat child labor in the CPLP area, which have been carried out in cooperation with the ILO (International Labor Organization) since 2010, and to the joint work with UNODC [Escritório das Nações Unidas sobre Drogas e Crime] Combating trafficking in human beings and in the field of education for justice.
Francisco Ribeiro Telles highlighted the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on human rights and defended an “urgent need” to strengthen multilateralism and international cooperation, “in a spirit of global solidarity and shared responsibility”.
“One of the consequences of the pandemic was to highlight inequalities and restrictions in access to a wide variety of public goods and services for basic needs. The pandemic has also potentiated a situation that disproportionately affects the most vulnerable people and groups, ”said the ambassador.
Furthermore, “the CPLP demands that the collective responses of the international community in the short, medium and long term be guided by respect for all human rights, including the right to development,” “in line with the appeal made by the United Nations Secretary-General for the creation of a new social contract ”.
“CPLP will continue to work to ensure the respect, protection and effectiveness of the rights of young people in our community, the right to universal, free and quality education and the right to decent work,” he said.
However, he stressed that “this will only be possible if the effective participation of young people themselves in the definition and operationalization of the public policies affecting them is ensured”.
Ribeiro Telles added that “the CPLP is essentially a friendship pact” and that “its design formula is based on the principle of solidarity in diversity”.
For this reason, his “challenge clearly remains to build pluralistic, inclusive, open, free and capable societies that can enable our citizens to lead a dignified life,” he emphasized.
“Only the political and collective decision to invest in the defense and promotion of human rights can prevent the persistence of social and economic inequalities and the exclusion of entire generations from such hard-won advances,” he mused.