The fourth session of the UN Open-Ended Working Group on Ageing was held from 12-15 August 2013 in New York, and was characterised by greater participation from civil society organisations of older persons, as well as broader representation from African and Asian countries than in previous sessions. Although many actors within group, particularly the Latin American countries, are trying to work towards a new binding instrument to comprehensively protect the human rights of older persons, significant opposition remains from some key States – including the EU, US and Canada.
Last month, the UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities engaged in constructive dialogue with Tunisia regarding its first State Report under the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which Tunisia was one of the first countries to ratify in 2008. This is the first state report to have been considered by the Committee, and some interesting remarks were made in its concluding observations to Tunisia, which indicate the Committee’s general approach and can serve as guidance to other states engaged in implementing the Convention.
Professor Ron McCallum, chair of the Committee, remarked at a conference in Reykjavik last week on his surprise and delight that Tunisia decided to send a delegation to the UN to engage in constructive dialogue on the State Report, since the interim government had only been appointed a few weeks prior to the event. Continue reading “Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities examines Tunisia’s Report”