Delegation of the European Union
to the United Nations - New York

EU Intervention – United Nations 3rd Committee: Interactive Dialogue on Human Rights and Extreme Poverty

New York, 23/10/2017 - 00:00, UNIQUE ID: 171205_4
Statements on behalf of the EU

European Union Intervention at the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly Third Committee Interactive dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and extreme poverty, Mr. Philip Alston.

Mr. Alston,

First of all, be sure that the European Union fully supports your mandate. The broad support given in June to the Human Rights Council resolution that renewed your mandate has once again demonstrated the importance of combating extreme poverty for the universal realization of human rights.

While extreme poverty prevents an individual from enjoying his economic and social rights, it also prevents him from gaining access to some of his civil and political rights. The European Union fully agrees with this assessment, which is at the heart of your report, as well as of the statement you pronounced to mark the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty on 17 October. It is a sad reality that, as your report underlines, extreme poverty significantly increases the risks of being tortured or of being victim of domestic abuse; it may reduce access to justice and political participation as well. Besides, discrimination against vulnerable people often accentuates their exclusion. This is all the more worrying that we are faced with rising economic inequalities, which affects all States.

Within this background, we should reaffirm that human rights as universal, indivisible and interdependent. The EU is committed to actively promote and defend them both within its borders and when engaging in relations with non-EU countries, with a view to ensuring that vulnerable persons are able to actually enjoy their civil and political rights as well.

Mr. Special Rapporteur, you are calling for a new approach in order to highlight the violations of civil and political rights of the poor. In this context, the EU would like to ask you the following question: how can we modify indicators regarding extreme poverty in order to better take into account the disproportionate violations of civil and political rights affecting vulnerable people?

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