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Rights Committee launches twenty-eighth session on disability

Flags at United Nations Headquarters - New York, USA

The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities today opened its twenty-eighth session, during which it would review the reports of Angola, Argentina, Georgia, Peru, Togo and Tunisia.

In her opening statement, Wan-Hea Lee, Chief, Civil, Political, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights Section, Human Rights Council and Treaty Mechanisms Division, Representative of the Secretary-General said the 186 ratifications to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities showed the commitment of the international community to an inclusive and accessible world. Since the last session, Timor-Leste had ratified the Convention. In addition, Armenia, the Republic of Korea, the Republic of Moldova, and Timor-Leste had ratified the Optional Protocol to the Convention, bringing the States parties to that instrument to 104.

During the session, in addition to holding dialogues with six States parties on periodic reports, the Committee would also review three individual communications under the Optional Protocol and follow-up on earlier Views, as well as hold a Day of General Discussion on 7 and 8 March 2023 with a regional focus on persons with disabilities in situations of risk and humanitarian emergencies.

Four new members were elected to the Committee for its twenty-eighth session: Muhannad Salah Al-azzeh (Jordan), Rehab Mohammed Boresli (Kuwait), Laverne Jacobs (Canada), Alfred Kouadio Kouassi (Côte D’Ivoire). Five members of the Committee were re-elected: Amalia Gamio Rios (Mexico), Rosemary Kayess (Australia), Miyeon Kim (Republic of Korea), Gertrude Fefoame (Ghana) and Markus Schefer (Switzerland).

As a result of the election, the composition of the Committee changed to 11 women and seven men. Ms. Lee said that this was the largest female representation in a treaty body after the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women.

Speaking at the opening of the session today were representatives of the Special Rapporteur on the elimination of discrimination against persons affected by leprosy and their family members; Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights; International Disability Alliance; Global Albinism Alliance; United Cities and Local Governments; European Disability Forum; Disability Rights Fund; Inter-American Coalition on De-Institutionalization; World Health Organization; International Communication Rights Alliance; Citizen Commission of Human Rights; Poder Judicial, republica Argentina; and Cesar Buero.

The Committee’s twenty-eight session will be held until Friday, 24 March 2023.

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