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Opinions & Interviews

9 Dec 2016

Kupchyna: National Human Rights Action Plan is about great ideas, practical steps

Kupchyna: National Human Rights Action Plan is about great ideas, practical steps

MINSK, 9 December (BelTA) – The National Human Rights Action Plan adopted in Belarus is not just about great ideas but also about practical and real steps, Belarus’ Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Alena Kupchyna said at the panel discussion “The National Human Rights Action Plan: Human Rights and 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” on 9 December.

“With all my experience of more than 20 years in multilateral and bilateral diplomacy, I am convinced that we need real practical steps. We need human rights to be viewed not only and not so much in the context of the great ideas enshrined in the International Bill of Human Rights, not only in the context of formal dances in international diplomacy. They should be considered in terms of practical real steps. Steps that help understand that the observance of human rights helps build a strong and economically sound society that lives in peace and concord,” said Alena Kupchyna.

The deputy minister noted that Belarus is a young country that is still on its way towards the national identity and civil society. “That is why I think understanding human rights as DNA, which contains the development program of society, is still not always properly perceived in Belarus,” the diplomat said.

Alena Kupchyna stressed that national human rights action plans help bring the norms of international law closer to the real situation in the countries.

However, she stressed, the implementation of this document will be successful only if it is inclusive. “This process should involve all our partners from the governmental and non-governmental sectors, international organizations - all those who are genuinely interested in the protection of human rights with a view to strengthening and developing the Belarusian state and the society on the basis of prosperity, peace and harmony,” the diplomat said.

The National Human Rights Action Plan is an inter-ministerial policy paper, a kind of roadmap defining the main lines of action to fulfill the obligations of the state in human rights. The document envisages about 100 activities to be undertaken by government agencies at all levels in 2016-2019. The document provides for the involvement of the scientific and religious communities, public associations, and financial and technical capacities of international organizations.

The panel discussion “The National Human Rights Action Plan: Human Rights and 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” has been organized by the Belarusian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the UN Office in Belarus. The event is held on the occasion of Human Rights Day, which is marked by the international community on 10 December every year. The aim of the discussions is to exchange the best practices in implementing the national human rights action plans and to consider human rights issues through the lens of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development approved at the UN Summit in September 2015.

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