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Denmark kick-starts membership of UN Human Rights Council with chairmanship of Council’s first meeting on human rights and the SDGs

21.01.2019  08:59

On 16 January in Geneva, the first meeting of the UN Human Rights Council on the links between the promotion and protection of human rights and the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development attracted a large number of representatives of states, the UN system, national human rights organisations, civil society and the private sector. The basis for the meeting was the Council’s resolution on the topic, led by Denmark and Chile, which underscores that the two agendas are interrelated and mutually reinforcing. On the eve of the meeting, Denmark and Chile hosted a successful reception to set the tone.

With the Danish Ambassador as chairman of the full day meeting and high-level participation of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, Prof. Jeffrey Sachs from Columbia University, former High Commissioner and Prime Minister of Ireland, Mary Robinson, among others, it was an opportunity to kick-start the Danish membership of Human Rights Council – on an agenda that has interest and support from across regions and usual alliances.

One key conclusion of the meeting was that strengthening the links between human rights and Agenda 2030 can contribute to closing the human rights implementation gap as well as the SDG accountability gap.

Danish Institute for Human Rights presented three databases, based on algorithms and machine-learning, that can contribute to such progress at the national level:

1. that shows how 92 pct. of the SDG targets are linked to specific articles of international human rights instruments.
2. that links the recommendations of international human rights mechanisms to the SDGs.
3. that offers inspiration to businesses on how to work efficiently with human rights due diligence while contributing to the SDGs.