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Resolution on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights in the Context of Peaceful Protests (oral revisions)

GE.14
Human Rights Council
Twenty-fifth session
Agenda item 3
Promotion and protection of all human rights, civil,
political, economic, social and cultural rights,
including the right to development
Australia,* Austria, Belgium,* Bosnia and Herzegovina,* Botswana, Bulgaria,*
Canada, Colombia,* Costa Rica, Croatia,* Cyprus,* Czech Republic, Denmark,*
Estonia, Finland,* France, Georgia,* Germany, Greece,* Honduras,* Hungary,*
Iceland,* Ireland, Italy, Latvia,* Liechtenstein,* Lithuania,* Luxembourg,* Maldives,
Malta,* Morocco, Montenegro, Netherlands,* New Zealand,* Norway,* Panama,*
Poland,* Portugal,* Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova,* Romania, Senegal,*
Slovakia,* Slovenia,* Spain,* Sweden,* Switzerland,* the former Yugoslav Republic
of Macedonia, Tunisia,* Turkey,* Ukraine,* United Kingdom of Great Britain and
Northern Ireland, United States of America, Uruguay*: draft resolution

25« The promotion and protection of human rights in the context of
peaceful protests
The Human Rights Council,
Reaffirming the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations,
Recalling the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action,
Reaffirming also the Universal Declaration of Human Rights , and recalling relevant
international human rights treaties, including the International Covenant on Civil and
Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights,
and relevant regional human rights instruments,
Reaffirming further that, consistent with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights,
States Members of the United Nations have pledged to achieve, in cooperation with the
United N ations, the promotion of universal respect for and observance of human rights and
fundamental freedoms for all without distinction such as race, colour, sex, language,
religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or othe r status,
Recalling Human Rights Council resolutions 12/16 of 2 October 2009 and 16/4 of
24 March 2011, on freedom of opinion and expression, 15/21 of 30 September 2010 , 21/16

* Non -member State of the Human Rights Council.
United Nations A /HRC/ 25/L. 20

G en era l A ssem b ly Distr.: Limited
24 March 2014

Original: English

ORAL REVISIONS

A/HRC/25/L.20
2
of 27 September 2012 and 24/5 of 26 September 2013, on the rights to freedom of peaceful
assembly and of association, and 19/35 of 23 March 2012 and 22/10 of 21 March 2013 , on
the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of peaceful protests,
Recalling also Human Rights Council resolutions 21/12 of 27 September 2012, on
the safety of journalists, 24/8 of 26 September 2013, on equal political participation, 22/6 of
21 March 2013, on protecting human rights defenders, and 24/21 of 27 September 2013, on
civil society space: creating and maintaining, in law and practice, a s afe and enabling
environment,
Recalling further the Declaration on the Right and Responsibility of Individuals,
Groups and Organs of Society to Promote and Protect Universally Recognized Human
Rights and Fundamental Freedoms,
Recognizing that, pursuant to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Convention on
the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, the rights to freedom of peaceful
assembly, of expression and of association are human rights guaranteed to all, while their
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applicable international human rights instruments,
Recognizing also that any such restrictions must be based in law, in accordance with
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competent, independent, impartial and prompt administrative or judicial review,
PP 8 bis: Bearing in mind that domestic legislation designed to guarantee public
safety and public order must contain clearly defined provisions consistent with
international human rights obligations and commitments, including the principle of non-
discrimination, and that such legislation is not used to impede or restrict the exercise of
any human right, including freedom of expression, association and peaceful assembly,
which are essential for the promotion and protection of other rights; [BASED ON 22/6
OP 4] Acknowledging that peaceful protests can occur in all societies, including protests
that are spontaneous, simultaneous, unauthorized or r estricted,
Acknowledging also that participation in peaceful protests can be an important form
of exercising the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly, of expression, of association and
of participation in the conduct of public affairs,
Recognizing that p eaceful protests can make a positive contribution to the
development , strengthening and effectiveness of democratic systems, and to democratic
processes, including elections and referendums,
Acknowledging that peaceful protests can contribute to the full e njoyment of civil,
political, economic, social and cultural rights,
Reaffirming that everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person,
Reaffirming also that participation in public and peaceful protests should be entirely
voluntary and uncoer ced,
Stressing therefore that everyone must be able to express their grievances or
aspirations in a peaceful manner, including through public protests without fear of reprisals
or of being intimidated, harassed, injured, sexually assaulted, beaten, arbitra rily arrested
and detained, tortured, killed or subjected to enforced disappearance,
Deeply concerned about extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions , torture and
other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment of persons exercising their

A/HRC/25/L.20
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rights to freedom of peaceful assembly, of expression and of association in all regions of
the world ,
Expressing its concern about the number of attacks targeting human rights defenders
and journalists in the context of peaceful protests,
Expressing its concern also at the increasing criminalization, in all parts of the
world, of individuals and groups for having organiz ing ed or tak ing en part in peaceful
protests,
Stressing that peaceful protests should not be viewed as a threat, and therefore
encouraging all States to engage in an open, inclusive and meaningful dialogue when
dealing with peac eful protests and their causes,
Noting that assemblies in which the organizers and participants intend to use
violence are not to be considered peaceful protests;
Recalling that isolated acts of sporadic violence committed by others in the course
of a protest do not deprive p eaceful individuals of their rights to freedom of peaceful
assembly, of expression and of association,
Recognizing that national human rights institutions and representatives of civil
society, including non -governmental organizations, can play a useful rol e in facilitating
continued dialogue between individuals taking part in peaceful protests and the relevant
authorities,
Stressing the need to ensure full accountability for human rights violations or abuses
in the context of peaceful protests,
Recalling the Code of Conduct for Law Enforcement Officials and the Basic
Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials,
Recalling also the importance of adequate training for officials exercising law
enforcement duties assigned to deal with public protests , and of refraining, to the extent
feasible, from assigning military personnel to perform such duties,
PP 23 bis – Bearing in mind that assemblies can be facilitated on the basis of
communication and collaboration among protesters, local authorities and officials
exercising law enforcement duties,
1. Takes note with interest appreciation of the holding of the seminar on
effective measures and best practices to ensure the promotion and protection of
human rights in the context of peaceful protests on 2 December 2013 and of the
summary of the seminar on effective measures and best practices to ensure the promotion
and protection of human rights in the context of peaceful protests , which took place on 2
December 2013 , prepared by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights ,1 in
accordance with Human Rights Council resolution 22/10;
2. Recalls that States have the responsibility, including in the context of
peaceful protests, to promote and protect human righ ts and to prevent human rights
violations, including extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, arbitrary arrest and
detention, enforced disappearances, and torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading
treatment or punishment, and calls upon States t o avoid the abuse of criminal and civil
proceedings or threats of such acts at all times;

1 A/HRC/25/32 and Corr.1 .

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3. Calls upon States to promote a safe and enabling environment for individuals
and groups to exercise their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly, of expression and of
association, including by ensuring that their domestic legislation and procedures relat ing to
the rights to freedom of peaceful assembly, of expression and of association are in
conformity with their international human rights obligations and commitmen ts, clearly and
explicitly establish a presumption in favour of the exercise of these rights, and that they are
effectively implemented;
4. Urges States to facilitate peaceful protests by providing protestors with
access to public space and protecting them , without discrimination, where necessary,
against any form of threat and harassment, and underlines the role of local authorities in
this regard;
5. Underlines the important role that communication between protestors, local
authorities and officials exerc ising law enforcement duties can play in the proper
management of assemblies , such as peaceful protests , and calls on States to establish
appropriate channels in that regard;
6. Urges States to pay particular attention to the safety and protection of women
and women human rights defenders from acts of intimidation and harassment , as well as
gender -based violence, including sexual assault, in the context of peaceful protests;
7. Reaffirms that States must take all appropriate necessary measures to ensure
for the safety and protection of children , including while they exercise their rights to
freedom of peaceful assembly, expression and association, including in the context of
peaceful protests ;
8. Calls upon all States to pay particular attention to the saf ety of journalists and
media workers covering peaceful protests, taking into account their specific role, exposure
and vulnerability ;
9. Urges all States to avoid using force during peaceful protests, and to ensure
that, where force is absolutely necessary , no one is subject to excessive or indiscriminate
use of force;
10. Calls upon States, as a matter of priority, to ensure that their domestic
legislation and procedures are consistent with their international obligations and
commitments in relation to the use of force in the context of law enforcement and are
effectively implemented by officials exercising law enforcement duties, in particular
applicable principles of law enforcement , such as the principles of necessity and
proportionality, bearing in mind that lethal force may only be used as a last resort to
protect against an imminent threat to life and that it may not be used merely to disperse a
gathering ;
11. Affirms that nothing can ever justify ?VKRRW WR NLOO? SUDFWLFHV DV ZHOO DV the
indiscriminate use of lethal force against a crowd , acts which are is unlawful under
international human rights law;
12. Calls upon States to investigate any death or significant injury committed
during protests, including those resulting from the discharge of firearm s or the use of non –
lethal weapons by officials exercising law enforcement duties;
13. Also calls upon States to ensure adequate training of officials exercising law
enforcement duties and, where applicable, to promote adequate training for private
personn el acting on behalf of a State, including in international human rights law and,
where appropriate, international humanitarian law; 14. Encourages States to make
protective equipment and non -lethal weapons available to their officials exercising law

A/HRC/25/L.20
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enforcement duties, while pursuing international efforts to regulate and est ablish protocols
for the training and use of non -lethal weapons;
15. Underlines the importance of thorough, independent and scientific testing of
non -lethal weapons prior to deployment to establish their lethality and the extent of likely
injury , and of mo nitor ing appropriate training and use of such weapons;
16. Stresses the importance of international cooperation in support of national
efforts for the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the
context of peaceful protests, in order to raise the capacities of law enforcement agencies to
deal with such protests in a manner that conforms to their international human rights
obligations and commitments;
17. Underlines the necessity to address the management of assemblies, including
peaceful protests, so as to contribute to their peaceful conduct, and to prevent loss of life of,
and injuries to, protestors, bystanders, those monitoring such protests, and officials
exercising law enforcement duties , as well as any human rights violati on or abuse;
18 . Recognizes the importance of documenting human rights violations and
abuses committed in the context of peaceful protests, and the important role that can be
played by national human rights institutions, civil society , in cluding non -governmental
organizations, journalists and other media workers, Internet users and human rights
defenders, and other relevant stakeholders in documenting human rights violations or
abuses committed in the context of peaceful protests this regard;
19. Urges States to ensure accountability for human rights violations and
abuses through judicial or other that national mechanisms, based on law in conformity
with their international human rights obligations and commitments, can deliver
accountabi lity for human rights violations and abuses , and provide victims with access to a
remedy and redress, including in the context of peaceful protests;
20. Requests the High Commissioner to prepare, from within existing resources,
guidelines for facilitating and protecting peaceful protests based on good practices, with a
view to assisting State s in promoting and protecting human rights in the context of peaceful
protests, in collaboration with the Special Rapporteur on the rights to peaceful assembly
and of association , the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary
executions and other relevant special procedures, and in consultation with States and other
relevant stakeholders, and to present th ose guidelines to the Human Rights Council at its
thirty -first session;
20 ALT. Requests the Special Rapporteur on the rights to freedom of peaceful
assembly and of association and the Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or
arbitrary executions to prepare a compilation of practical recommendations for the
proper management of assemblies based on best practices and lessons learnt and, in
the preparation of this report, to seek the views of States, relevant United Nations
agencies in particular OHCHR and UNODC, intergovernmental organizations, other
relevant special procedure mandate holders, national human rights institutions, non-
governmental organizations and other relevant stakeholders such as practitioners,
and to submit the compilation at the 31st session of the HRC,
21. Decides to continue its consideration of this topic , as well as next steps, at its
thirty -first session under agenda item 3.

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