Media Statement

23 February 2020

Deputy Minister Botes to participate in the High-Level Segment UN Human Rights Council

The Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Mr Alvin Botes, will participate in the High-Level Segment of the 43rd Session of the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council from 24-26 February 2020.

The High-Level Segment will afford participants the opportunity to address the Council on their national efforts to promote and protect human rights and international cooperation, including outlining their foreign policy approach to human rights.

Deputy Minister Botes’ participation at the High-Level Segment will focus on the following issues: outline South Africa’s human rights priorities for 2020; give an update on the government’s recent efforts in ensuring the promotion, protection, fulfilment, enjoyment and  practical realisation of human rights; initiate the process of lobbying support for the 20th Anniversary of the DDPA, in particular the convening of a one-day high-level plenary event to commemorate the 20th Anniversary of the adoption of the DDPA on the margins of the High-Level segment of the 76th Session of the General Assembly in 2021; and deliver messages on advancing gender equality, empowerment of women, and combating violence against women and girls.

South Africa will also participate in two high-level panel discussion on human rights mainstreaming, whose theme will be: “Thirty years of implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child: challenges and opportunities”; and the 25th anniversary of the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action adopted at the 4th World Conference on Women.

South Africa’s term as a member of the HRC ended December 2019 and the country is currently on a one year mandatory break. South Africa intends to avail herself as a candidate for the period 2022–2024.

The 43rd Session of the Human Rights Council takes place against the background of South Africa having assumed the Chairship of the Africa Union.

ISSUED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS AND COOPERATION

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