UAE's National Human Rights Institute wins international support

Human rights champions from across the region back country's efforts to promote equality

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The UAE has won international support for its efforts to promote harmony and unity through the establishment of its National Human Rights Institute.

Champions of human rights from across the region and beyond have hailed the Emirates for its efforts to empower all sections of society and stay true to the values of Sheikh Zayed, the Founding Father.

President Sheikh Khalifa, who issued a federal law in August to establish the independent body, this week appointed its first board of trustees.

Maqsoud Kruse, who has been named its chairman, said the organisation will strive to improve lives and ensure equality in society.

“The National Human Rights Institution’s main objective is to enhance human rights within the UAE for all those who live in this country,” Mr Kruse told Wam.

“Whether you are a citizen or a resident, we are all equal before the law.”

Issa Rashid Al Arabi, president of the Arab Federation for Human Rights, said the creation of the NHRI reflected the UAE's desire to deepen its links with the global community before assuming its role as a member of the UN Human Rights Council for the 2022-2024 term.

Ala Chalabi, chairman of the Arab Organisation for Human Rights, an entity with an advisory capacity at the UN, said the organisation will help to safeguard human rights in the UAE and across the Middle East.

Their sentiments were echoed by Dr Amjad Shamout, the former head of the Standing Arab Human Rights Committee at the Arab League, who is also the chairman of Al Jisr Al Arabi Human Rights Centre in Jordan.

Ayman Nasri, the head of the Arab-European Forum for Dialogue and Human Rights, another entitKhalid Al Ajami with an advisory capacity at the UN, said the formation of the NHRI is a step forward towards reinforcing co-operation between local and international human rights agencies.

“NHRI will help present the UAE human rights file in a transparent manner to the international community and to the permanent members of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHCR) as per the recognised international best practices,” he said.

“By establishing the NHRI, the UAE political leadership reaffirms the importance of empowering specialised national councils being a key tool for international organisations to assess the human rights conditions in the UN member states.”

The NHRI also won praise from Khalid Al Ajami, chairman of the Board of Kuwait Human Rights Society, who said the UAE's humanitarian vision for the future was in line with the principles of Sheikh Zayed.

Mohamed Fazie, the former chairman of the Human Rights Committee at the Arab League, said the independent body was the culmination of years of hard work by the UAE leadership to protect and empower its people.

Dr Abduljabbar Ahmed Al Tayeb, chairman of the Bahrain Jurists Society, which also has advisory status at the UN, said that the UAE leadership's move to ensure 50 per cent of the NHRI members are women reflected the important role of women in society.

The NHRI will work on all aspects of human rights in the UAE, including the rights of women, children, people with special needs and workers.

It will stage seminars and workshops as well as produce annual reports to assess the status of human rights in the UAE, in partnership with relevant authorities.

Updated: December 23, 2021, 6:52 PM