The High Commissioner for Human Rights is the principle person responsible for coordinating all human rights affairs at the United Nations. This Office provides substantive and technical support to the human rights bodies and mechanisms.
This website contains a lot of valuable information, and is a good place to start when looking for UN documentation on human rights issues.
Human Rights by Country - includes reports and findings issues by UN charter and treaty bodies, as well as treaty ratification information.
Human Rights Databases - list of databases maintained by OHCHR, including the Universal Human Rights Index and the Special Procedures Database.
Human Rights Issues - Topical list, with links to additional relevant resources.
OCHCR News Database - Searchable news database, with materials back to 2014. Includes press releases and official statements.
OCHCR Publications - Fact sheets, policy materials, and in-depth studies.
The Human Rights Council is responsible for the promotion and protection of all human rights around the globe.
Each of the UN's nine core human rights instruments has an assigned treaty body, which is responsible for implementing the treaty or optional protocol and monitoring the compliance of state parties. The monitoring process resembles that used by the Human Rights Council for its Universal Periodic Review, but does vary slightly among treaty bodies.
After a State ratifies a treaty, it must submit an initial self-assessment of its compliance to the relevant treaty body. The treaty body then solicits feedback and information from relevant NGOs and civil society organizations before issuing a state party report. This process is then repeated on a regular basis. State party reports (country reports) can be located using the Treaty Body Database. Alternatively, these reports can be found on the monitoring body's website (see links in table below).
Each of these instruments also contains a mechanism for bringing a complaint of violations of provisions of the human rights treaties before the monitoring bodies. The three main procedures are: individual communications, state-to-state complaints, and inquiries. Individual complaints is the most common mechanism, and is authorized in all nine instruments (but has not entered into force in all nine).
Use the UN's Treaty Body Jurisprudence database to locate decisions on admissibility and on the merits issued by treaty bodies authorized to consider individual complaints against state parties.
|ICERD||International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination||21 Dec 1965||CERD|
|ICCPR||International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights||16 Dec 1966||CCPR|
|ICESCR||International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights||16 Dec 1966||CESCR|
|CEDAW||Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women||18 Dec 1979||CEDAW|
|CAT||Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment||10 Dec 1984||CAT|
|CRC||Convention on the Rights of the Child||20 Nov 1989||CRC|
|ICMW||International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families||18 Dec 1990||CMW|
|CPED||International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance||20 Dec 2006||CED|
|CRPD||Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities||13 Dec 2006||CRPD|
|ICESCR-OP||Optional Protocol to the Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights||10 Dec 2008||CESCR|
|ICCPR-OP1||Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights||16 Dec 1966||CCPR|
|ICCPR-OP2||Second Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, aiming at the abolition of the death penalty||15 Dec 1989||CCPR|
|OP-CEDAW||Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women||10 Dec 1999||CEDAW|
|OP-CRC-AC||Optional protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict||25 May 2000||CRC|
|OP-CRC-SC||Optional protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography||25 May 2000||CRC|
|OP-CRC-IC||Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on a communications procedure||14 Apr 2014||CRC|
|OP-CAT||Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment||18 Dec 2002||SPT|
|OP-CRPD||Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities||12 Dec 2006||CRPD