On 14 June 2018, a workshop on the right to peace took place in Geneva in accordance with the Resolution RES/35/4 adopted by the Human Rights Council (HRC) by which it decided to convene, with the support of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, in the period between the thirty-seventh and the thirty-eighth sessions of the Human Rights Council, a half-day intersessional workshop on the right to peace, to discuss the implementation of the Declaration on the Right to Peace.
The Workshop was opened by H.E. Mr. Vojislav Šuc, President of the Human Rights Council. After his intervention, Ms. Kate Gilmore, Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights stressed in her opening remarks that peace cannot be fulfilled without the full respect of all human rights and development.
In the first part, the workshop focused on means to build peace within and between societies, including equality and non-discrimination, justice and the rule of law and freedom from fear and want. Both Ambassador Christian Guillermet, former Chairperson Rapporteur of the Open Ended Working Group on the Right to Peace (2013-15), and Maya Brehm, Article 36, participated in this first session.
In the second part, the workshop concentrated on sustainable measures by States, the United Nations and specialized agencies to implement the Declaration on the Right to Peace, as well as measures by international, regional, national and local organizations and civil society to support and assist in its implementation. Konstantinos Tararas, UNESCO, and Jennifer Pochat, Foundation Peace without Borders, actively participated as main speakers.
Jennifer outlined the activities undertaken by the Foundation in the promotion of the right to peace. She explained the fundamental role played a large group of artists, led by Miguel Bose and Juanes, before the United Nations. Education on peace is a key element to make peace sustainable among societies, she said. As measures identified for future actions, she highlighted the creation of peace forum within the Human Rights Council or the use of social media.
Finally, the third part addressed the universal task of educating for peace, including through international and national institutions of education for peace as well as the University for Peace’s engagement in teaching, research, post-graduate training and dissemination of knowledge.
Along with Koumbou Boly Barry, Special Rapporteur on the right to education, Prof. Francisco Rojas Aravena, Rector of the University for Peace stressed the critical role of education in the promotion and protection of peace worldwide.
The report of the intersessional workshop on the right to peace will be presented by the OHCHR in the regular session of the HRC to be held in September 2018.