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NHRCK's General Discussion at the 13th Open Ended Working Group on Ageing
Statement to the OEWGA13th Session 3-6 April 2023
It is my honor, as the Commissioner of the National Human Rights Commission of Korea to present this statement on behalf of 12 National Human Rights Institutions that are members and observers of the Global Alliance of National Human rights Institutions (GANHRI)’s Working Group on Ageing and the rights of older persons.
First of all, I would like to congratulate you on organizing another year of an inclusive forum to protect and promote the rights of older persons. The Open Ended Working Group on Ageing is a unique opportunity where member states, as well as, NHRIs and NGOs from all region come together and engage in meaningful dialogue. I hope we keep this practice alive and well and move forward decisively and substantively to make the international human rights framework stronger.
Most of us here today acknowledge the fact that there are gaps in protecting the rights of older persons. NHRIs are no stranger to this. The members of GANHRI Working Group on Ageing have strongly advocated for the creation of a legally binding instrument. Last year, the National Human Rights Commission of Korea has proposed the draft text for the development of a Convention on the Rights of Older Persons. It incorporated discussions from the OEWGA, OHCHR, NHRIs, NGOs and others over the years. The protection gaps have been identified, and from our perspective it is about time we start drafting a legally binding instrument at the OEWGA.
NHRIs are up for the task. We have been active in proclaiming the need for a UN Convention on the rights of older persons and we could serve as national-level monitoring bodies as under a number of other conventions.
We call on all member states to engage actively to adopt a clear plan and timeline for establishing a Convention, in line with the OEWGA’s mandate set out in 2012 by the General Assembly in resolution A/RES/67/139.
I wish the 13th session of the OEWGA will be the last one addressing the protection gaps of older persons rights, and that substantive work on a draft of a legally binding instrument for older persons will begin promptly after this session.
Once again, I would like to express my gratitude to those who are working to promote the rights of older persons.
I thank you.
National human Rights Commission of Korea
Office of the Commissioner for Human Rights of Poland
Commission on Human Rights of the Philippines
Georgia Public Defender’s Office
Ombudsman’s Office of Peru
Procuraduría para la Defensa de los Derechos Humanos
Nigeria National Human Rights Commission
Kenya National Commission for Human Rights
National Commission on Human Rights Egypt
Ethiopian Human Rights Commission
Slovak National Centre for Human Rights
German Institute for Human Rights