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United
Nations System
in Senegal

Human Rights

« To achieve international co-operation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural, or humanitarian character, and in promoting and encouraging respect for human rights and for fundamental freedoms for all without distinction as to race, sex, language, or religion ; and” (Article 1.3 of Charter of the United Nations)

The promotion and protection of human rights are a key objective and a guiding principle of the Organization. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is the cornerstone of the vast set of legal instruments on human rights that have been developed over the decades since the end of World War II. 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights placed human rights in the light of international law. Ever since, the Organization actively protects human rights with legal instruments and fieldwork.

Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt from United States holding a poster in French of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt from United States holding a poster in French of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights proclaimed by the General Assembly in 1948 sets out the fundamental rights and freedoms of all human beings, men and women, including the right to life, liberty and nationality; right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; work, education, food and housing, and the right to participate in public affairs. Human rights are divided into two groups namely civil and political rights and economic, social and cultural rights. UN entities present in Senegal and working in these areas are numerous.

In 2010, the UN General Assembly voted unanimously to create the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women). Its main mandate is to promote equality, gender equity and empowerment of women.

Since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948, States have become parties to the nine main treaties, interdependent, interrelated and mutually complementary to enforce human rights. There is another treaty on enforced disappearances, which has not yet come into force.
The eight bodies of treaties on human rights are committees of independent experts who monitor the enforcement of international key treaties human rights. They were created according to the Treaty that they are responsible for overseeing.

Charter’s bodies:

  • the Council of Human Rights
  • UPR
  • Special Procedures assumed by the Council of Human Rights

Treaty bodies
There are 9 treaty bodies on human rights which monitor the implementation of major international treaties on human rights:

  • the Human Rights Committee (OHCHR)
  • the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR)
  • the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)
  • the Committee against Torture
  • the Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT)
  • the Child Rights Committee (CRC)
  • the Committee on Migrant Workers (CMW)
  • the Disability Rights Committee
  • Finally, the Committee on Enforced Disappearances (CED)
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