Feb 25, 2021 / 12:41

Vietnam applies for UN Human Rights Council membership

The UN Human Rights Committee notes Vietnam’s efforts to comply with its Covenant obligations, but incompatibility still remains between its legal framework and the Covenant.

Vietnam has announced its postulation to the UN Human Rights Council as ASEAN candidate for the 2023-25 term.

  Vietnam's Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Pham Binh Minh at the UN Human Rights Council's session on February 22. Photo: Baoquocte

Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Pham Binh Minh told an online high-level meeting of the Geneva-based Rights Council’s 46th Regular Session held this week.

He claimed that the state fully protects “human rights and fundamental freedoms.”

Human rights and freedoms can be protected and promoted only when a country defends itself against the Covid-19 pandemic, Minh said.

He argued that protecting people in the pandemic is the best way to ensure that each and every member of the society can fully enjoy their human rights.

Minh stressed that the country continues protecting and promoting all human rights and fundamental freedoms of the people, even in this most difficult of times.

The application will place Vietnam in competition with candidates from other countries in the UN’s Asia-Pacific representational grouping.

The UN Human Rights Committee in March 2019 issued its “concluding observations”, making recommendations to Vietnam on how it can strengthen its compliance with the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The concluding observations were made after Vietnam submitted its third report to the UN Human Rights Committee, the body of independent experts that monitors the implementation of the treaty. The Committee examined the report and engaged in a constructive dialogue with Vietnam in Geneva, Switzerland. The Human Rights Committee has requested Vietnam to report within two years on the steps it has taken to implement the recommendations.

The Committee notes Vietnam’s efforts to comply with its Covenant obligations, including through the revision of certain legislation, however the country should further review its domestic legal framework to identify gaps and conflicts with the Covenant, ensuring that all Covenant rights are given full legal effect in its domestic legal order.