UN appreciates Viet Nam's Voluntary Mid-term Report to the HRC
Ms. Rana Flowers, Acting UN Resident Coordinator appreciated Viet Nam's Voluntary Mid-term Report. (Photo: Tuan Anh)
Recently, in Ha Noi, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs launched Viet Nam's Voluntary Mid-term Report on the implementation of UPR third cycle recommendations and announced the country's candidacy to the UN Human Rights Council in the 2023-2025 tenure.
Talking with The World & Viet Nam Report, Ms. Rana Flowers, Acting UN Resident Coordinator in Viet Nam, pointed out the significance of the voluntary mid-term report and affirmed commitments by the UN system to accompany Viet Nam in promoting and protecting human rights.
Could you please share your assessment of the recently published voluntary mid-term report on the implementation of UPR third cycle recommendations?
I think first and foremost, let me congratulate the Vietnamese Government for submitting a voluntary mid-term report to the UN Human Rights Council.
It's a midterm report on the way to the fourth cycle. The report itself captures progress in several areas. It is, like any report, incredibly important to consider that it's a moment in time when the report is done.
And the most important work is the work that is ongoing to really show a stronger protection, a stronger respect for human rights, to identify transparently the challenges that still exist, and to be able to work together to be able to address those challenges.
Perhaps as we move forward, we can assist the Vietnamese Government to ensure that the report is also analytical. It not only describes what happened, but also evaluates the implementation of the UPR recommendations, as well as identifies challenges along the way.
"We consider it as a “mid-review”, a basis for us to look back, learn from our success, identify difficulties and challenges, draw from experience to further consolidate our efforts during the remaining period before our fourth UPR in the future" - Assistant Foreign Minister Do Hung Viet.
Many issues were raised in today's event, such as some of the comments that emphasized the need to ensure wide consultation and real participation from across society, in the development of such reports in the practice of promotion and respect of human rights.
But overall, I feel that everybody here was very supportive, really wanting to see the government continue on this path, to identify transparently, openly, objectively, their position in relation to the human rights norms, in relation to the treaties that they have ratified.
We also hope that the Vietnamese Government continues that journey, constantly making progress, implementing and improving measures to promote human rights.
International delegates speak highly on Viet Nam's Voluntary Mid-term Report on the implementation of UPR third cycle recommendations. (Photo: Tuan Anh)
There are only 2 years left before the UPR third cycle will come to an end. Over the last time, the UN has greatly supported Viet Nam in the process of implementing the UPR third cycle recommendations. So how will the UN accompany Viet Nam in the remaining 2 years?
I think it's absolutely a mandate of the UN to focus on respecting and promoting human rights. It's also mandated by the UN Charter, the member states, everybody in this room, including the Vietnamese Government, to do the same. So we are working together towards a common goal of securing and promoting human rights.
I think that within the next two years there will be no change in international human rights treaties as well as reporting mechanisms to treaty bodies, such as the United Nations Human Rights Council.
Events like the announcement of the Mid-term Report on Voluntary Implementation of the UPR Cycle III Recommendations Viet Nam approved today are an opportunity to exchange best practices around the world, helping Viet Nam to do better international human rights commitments.
These moments are crucial to be able to hear the feedback to understand the best practices around the world, perhaps in other parts, to help the present. Viet Nam has done a very good job!
A good example that I see published in today's report is that, in a relatively short time, Vietnam has launched many Family and Juvenile Courts in the People's Court system with various specially trained judges. If only a few years ago, Viet Nam did not have such court models and now there are 41 Family and Juvenile Courts nationwide, and in the future there will be courts in each province.
One of the examples I draw out today of that is the fact that Viet Nam, in a relatively short period of time, has been able to introduce many Family and Juvenile Courts of the People's Court system with various specially trained judges in those courts.
This is also one of Viet Nam's human rights commitments. These are strengthening the rule-of-law. The state is conducting legal reforms to perfect the institutional, judicial and policy foundations related to human rights, and at the same time, more closely incorporate the provisions of international treaties on human rights into national law.
The UN system will always accompany Viet Nam in promoting and protecting human rights and promoting principles of international law, thus implementing sustainable development goals and not leaving anyone behind.
Launched in 2008, the UN Human Rights Council's UPR mechanism is one of the outstanding successes, built on the principles of transparency, fairness, non-discrimination, promoting dialogue and cooperation between countries.
In the third cycle, Viet Nam received 291 recommendations from 122 countries and approved 241 of them. On December 31, 2019, a decision by the Prime Minister was issued to implement the UPR third cycle recommendations approved by Viet Nam with the participation of 18 ministries and agencies.
This is the first time that Viet Nam has developed a voluntary mid-term report on the implementation of the UPR recommendations. To date, only 80 countries have submitted at least one voluntary midterm report. For the third cycle, Viet Nam is among 20 countries that have developed such a report.