Rights of persons with disabilities – Note by the Secretary-General (A/77/203) [EN/AR/RU/ZH] – World

Attachments

Seventy-seventh session
Item 69 c) of the provisional agenda*
Promotion and protection of human rights: human rights
Situations and Reports of Special Rapporteurs and Representatives

The Secretary-General has the honor to transmit to the General Assembly the report of the Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities, Gerard Quinn, submitted pursuant to Human Rights Council resolution 44/10.

Summary

In this report, the Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities, Gerard Quinn, examines the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities in the context of military operations. The report focuses on the implementation and application of obligations under international humanitarian law towards persons with disabilities during the conduct of hostilities.

Introduction

  1. This report is submitted by the Special Rapporteur on the rights of persons with disabilities, Gerard Quinn, to the General Assembly. It contains a thematic study on the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities in military operations.

  2. In preparing the report, the Special Rapporteur engaged in extensive regional consultations (in Africa, Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa). The Special Rapporteur would like to thank the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the International Disability Alliance and the Diakonia Center for International Humanitarian Law for coordinating and helping to facilitate the regional consultations. These unprecedented consultations, bringing together the military and disabled civil society, proved to be very instructive. They lay the groundwork for continued dialogue of this type in the future.

  3. As part of the process of preparing the report, the Special Rapporteur also analyzed responses to a questionnaire sent to States, their armies, national human rights institutions, United Nations specialized agencies, persons with disabilities and their representative organizations. The Special Rapporteur received a total of 22 written contributions and expresses his deep appreciation to all respondents for their insightful contributions and cooperative attitude.

  4. This report is the second in a three-part series on armed conflict and disability. The first – presented in 2021 to the General Assembly – assessed the overall visibility of persons with disabilities across all points of the conflict/peace continuum, from conflict prevention to the conduct of hostilities, evacuation and assistance humanitarian aid, peacekeeping and peacebuilding (A/76/146). He found that people with disabilities were relatively invisible to absolutely invisible at all points along this continuum. To build on this foundation, the Special Rapporteur decided to produce a more focused report on the implementation and application of obligations under international humanitarian law towards persons with disabilities during the conduct of hostilities.

  5. The third and final thematic report in this series will be presented in 2023 and will focus on peacebuilding and disability, including accountability for past wrongs. It will complement the series by focusing on how to make more intentional space in peacebuilding processes for the voices of people with disabilities, who have key ideas about rebuilding broken societies and creating a future. more resilient and sustainable for the benefit of all. These three reports can be seen as a focused and coherent contribution to broader debates within the UN system linking peace and security to human rights, and in particular in relation to the rights of persons with disabilities.

  6. The purpose of this report is not to paint a picture of a more inclusive kind of warfare. Far from there. It is based on the essential illegality of all war under the Charter of the United Nations and aims to significantly reduce the lethality of armed conflict as experienced by one of the world’s largest minorities, people with disabilities.

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