Report of the Human Rights Advisory Panel

HRAP

The Human Rights Advisory Panel rendered its annual report for 2013. The Panel issued a number of important opinions in the past year, deciding whether and to what extent facts alleged by the complainants had led to different violations of human rights by the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK).

Those opinions particularly deserving of attention came from cases involving allegations of a lack of an adequate police investigation in connection with abductions, disappearances, and killings related to procedural obligations under Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights, as well as allegations of violations of Article 3 of the Convention against victims and close relatives. The importance of the right to truth has also been recognized by the Panel.

In these opinions, as well as in other cases, the Panel has continued to elaborate its own jurisprudence, taking into consideration the international human rights standards expressed in the case law of the European Court of Human Rights and other international bodies, including, in particular, the UN Human Rights Committee.

Overall, the Panel estimates that its co-operation with the UNMIK in ongoing cases continued to proceed well and that the responses from the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) in Kosovo have been much quicker than in previous years in respect of informing the public of the decisions made in response to the Panel’s opinions.

However, as already mentioned in previous annual reports, the Panel has highlighted the continuous lack of visible indications of the preparedness within the UN system to ensure adequate reparations, including financial compensation, to victims of human rights violations identified by the Panel.

The Human Rights Advisory Panel examines complaints of alleged human rights violations committed by or attributable to the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) and makes recommendations to the Special Representative of the Secretary-General (SRSG) in Kosovo when appropriate.

Any person who believes that UNMIK is responsible for a violation of their human rights can complain to the Panel to seek a determination of that allegation.

The Human Rights Advisory Panel is the only human rights mechanism in existence that deals specifically with human rights violations allegedly committed by or attributable to a United Nations field mission.