Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Geneva, Switzerland
Address: Chemin des Fins 2, Case Postale 102, 1211 Geneva 19 - Telephone: 022 799 9100 - Fax: 022 799 9178

Human Rights Council - 25th Regular Session

General comments after action on resolutions and decisions
Australian Statement

27 March 2014


Australia would like to acknowledge the tireless efforts of the many delegations who have worked during this Human Rights Council session to build trust and to find compromise solutions, even on sensitive issues.

The consensus adoption of those resolutions is evidence of the value of negotiation, give and take, and balanced compromise.

Australia has always engaged constructively with other members and observers of this Council in accordance with Resolution 5/1 which requires that the Council’s working methods be “transparent, impartial, equitable, fair, pragmatic” and “lead to clarity, predictability, and inclusiveness”. We consider these transparent working methods to be a key strength of the Council.

Australia is therefore disappointed and concerned at the tactics that have been adopted by a small number of delegations during the course of this Council session.

In particular, we are concerned by the decision by these states to bypass the consultative negotiation process and instead to table hostile written amendments to resolutions. Such action undermines legitimate negotiation efforts.

Australia has sought to engage constructively during this Council session; to find compromise solutions; to build confidence; and to foster trust and cooperation. We have deliberately reached out across traditional country groupings as a sign of good faith and our commitment to engage. We will continue to do so.

Should Australia be elected to the Human Rights Council for the 2018-2020 term, we will continue our commitment to transparency and consultation and we will strive always to uphold the HRC’s tradition of compromise, trust and cooperation.