Human Rights
  • About human rights

    Human rights

    Granting that the Charter of the League of Arab States did not include a reference to the concept of human rights, with regard to both its enhancement and protection, and based on its commitment to develop joint Arab action in a way that serves the peoples of the Arab world, the Arab League has sought to remedy this shortcoming through initiating, establishing and developing mechanisms to enhance the protection and respect of human rights on the regional level.

    In 2001, a Human Rights department was established within the structure of the General Secretariat with the responsibility of coordinating the positions of Arab countries in regional and international forums on issues relating to the promotion of human rights. Moreover, the department acts as the technical secretariat for the Standing Committee on Human Rights established in 1968.  This a technical committee for  studying topics referred to it by the Member States and coming up with recommendations to be presented to the League’s Council at Foreign Ministers’ level. This Committee played a significant role in the drafting of  many intra- Arab agreements  pertaining to human rights.

    At the top of these agreements comes the Arab Charter on Human Rights which was  issued in 1994 by  the League’s Council at ministerial level. In recognition of the developments that have been and are still witnessed   in the Arab region,  the Arab Charter on Human Rights was amended and updated in 2004. The Arab Charter on Human Rights entered into force on 16 March 2008, after the seventh Member State submitted its ratification and 16 March was  adopted as the Arab Human Rights Day.

    With the Arab Charter on Human Rights entering into force, and according to article 45 thereof, the Arab Human Rights Committee  (the Charter’s mechanism) was established, as the first Arab regional mechanism tasked with studying the reports of the States Parties to this Charter, on the measures taken to put into effect the  rights and freedoms stipulated in its articles, and  on the progress made towards the enjoyment therefrom. The Committee shall submit to the Arab League Council, through the Secretary-General, an annual report containing its comments and recommendations.

    In the same context, the Arab States adopted the Arab Plan for Human Rights Education in 2008, its Guiding Manual in 2010 and the Arab Plan for Enhancing the Culture of Human Rights in 2010. Since the adoption of these two plans, the General Secretariat receives reports on the efforts of  Member States  to implement what was stated in the two plans and circulate them among the Member states, in order to benefit from the best practices.

    In response to the Arab League’s endeavors, the Arab States endorsed In 1994 the Arab Agreement on Regulating the Status of Refugees in the Arab Countries. The General Secretariat, in the light of the incessant aggravation of the refugee issues in the Arab region and despite the fact that the Agreement did not enter into force, proceeded on updating it, to be consistent with international standards. It is scheduled that the Agreement would be presented to the Arab League Council at the ministerial level, as soon as the update is completed.

    In the context of activating the participation of the national institutions and the non-governmental organizations concerned with Human Rights, the General Secretariat was keen to offer them the status of observer in the Standing Arab Human Rights Committee. The number, to date, of these institutions and organizations  reached 23 from 12 Arab countries

    On the International level, the Arab League cooperates with several international institutions in the field of human rights, such as the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the European Union (EU). This cooperation takes many forms and is implemented through holding seminars and workshops with the aim of building the capacities of governmental agencies, national institutions and non-governmental organizations working in the field of human rights.

    Last but not least, the League of Arab States General Secretariat is preparing the draft statute of the Arab Court of Human Rights. The idea of  the establishment of this Court was adopted by the Member States in the 2013 Doha Summit , upon a proposal submitted by the Kingdom of Bahrain.

    إدارة حقوق الإنسان


    لجنة حقوق الإنسان

Other Agencies

- Arab Parliament

- League Of Arba States Administrative Court

- Investment Court

Arab Mechanisms for Human Rights

- Permanent Arab Commission for Human Rights

- Arab human Rights Commission for the charter

- The arab Parliament Committee on Legislative, Legal and Human Rights Affairs

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