Statement: Conclusion of Substantive Discussions on Program Document of the UN Joint Program on Human Rights (UNJP)

PASAY CITY 02 June 2021 - The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) welcomes the conclusion of technical discussions on the Program Document of the UN Joint Program on Human Rights (UNJP). The Document outlines the objectives, strategies, indicators and targets, and governance mechanism of the three-year UNJP. It was developed following a series of intensive consultations between Philippine government agencies and participating UN agencies, and with inputs from the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) and civil society groups as part of an inclusive process. 

The DFA expresses appreciation to the UN Resident Coordinator (UNRC), the Department of Justice (DOJ), different lead government agencies, and other relevant stakeholders for formulating a substantive, credible and forward-looking UNJP that seeks to enhance the capacity of national institutions and actors to promote and protect human rights, and strengthen the Philippines’ compliance with its international human rights obligations.

Activities under the UNJP relate to human rights-based approaches on countering terrorism; strengthening the conduct of investigations and filing of appropriate administrative and/or criminal charges on human rights violations; provision of treatment and care services for persons who use drugs (PWUDs); and establishment of a national referral pathway to address human rights concerns using appropriate domestic mechanisms, among others. Government agencies and UN counterparts will develop annual work plans to implement various activities.

The UNJP embodies the spirit of partnership, trust-building and constructive engagement of Human Rights Council (HRC) resolution 45/33 entitled “Technical cooperation and capacity-building for the promotion and protection of human rights in the Philippines,” co-initiated by the Philippines and Iceland and adopted by consensus on 07 October 2020.

The Philippine Government and the UN are now in the process of finalizing administrative requirements for the signing of the Program Document of the UNJP. END