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Guideline of Operation for AICHR

Adopted 12 March 2012


GUIDELINES ON THE OPERATIONS OF THE ASEAN INTERGOVERNMENTAL COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS (AICHR)

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As the overarching institution responsible for the promotion and protection of Human Rights in ASEAN, the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter shall be referred to as "the AICHR") will discharge its duties pursuant to Article 14 of the ASEAN Charter and the AICHR's Terms of Reference (TOR). The operations of the AICHR shall be conducted in accordance to the following Guidelines:



1. FORMAT OF MEETING

1.1
The Meeting of the AICHR, convened in accordance with the AICHR's TOR (Articles 6.2 to 6.5) shall be attended by all Representatives of the AICHR and their assistants.

1.2 The Meeting of AICHR shall be conducted in accordance with ASEAN practices, including seating arrangements.

1.3 The AICHR shall meet in plenary unless it decides otherwise. The AICHR also may decide to meet in retreat with or without the participation of the ASEAN Secretariat. Where the AICHR decides to meet in retreat without the participation of the ASEAN Secretariat, the Chair shall prepare the summary of discussions and decisions made at the retreat.

1.4 AICHR may invite other persons to attend its meetings with the consensus of its Representatives and on a case to case basis.

1.5
Decision-making in AICHR shall be based on consultation and consensus in accordance with Article 20 of the ASEAN Charter (Article 6.1 of the AICHR's TOR).

2. AGENDA

2.1
A provisional agenda for each meeting shall be prepared by the Chair, with support from the ASEAN Secretariat. The provisional agenda shall be circulated to all the Member States for their comments and suggestions at least fifteen working days prior to the meeting.

2.2
Each Representative is requested to provide inputs, where possible, to the chair and ASEAN Secretariat 3 ­ 5 days after receiving the provisional agenda.




Adopted 12 March 2012


2.3 The Chair shall, through consultations with all the ASEAN Member States, consolidate the proposed amendments in a revised provisional agenda. The Chair shall circulate the revised provisional agenda to all
the Member States and the ASEAN Secretariat ten working days prior to the meeting.

2.4 The agenda shall be adopted by the AICHR at the beginning of each meeting.


3. NOTIFICATION OF REPRESENTATION

3.1 Each ASEAN Member State shall, through its relevant government body, formally inform the Chair of the AICHR and the Secretary-General of ASEAN of the appointment of its Representative at least fifteen working days prior to the commencement of the Representative's term.

3.2
Representatives shal have the obligation to attend AICHR meetings. If a Representative is unable to attend a meeting due to exceptional circumstances, the Government concerned shall formally notify the Chair of the AICHR of the appointment of a temporary representative with a full mandate to represent the Member State concerned, pursuant to Article 5.8 of the AICHR's TOR.

3.3
The Representatives shall notify the Chair or the Member State hosting the meeting as the case may be, of their respective lists of delegates who will attend the meeting at least seven working days prior to the meeting.


4. CHAIRMANSHIP
The Chair shall exercise his or her role in accordance with the AICHR's Terms of Reference and these Guidelines, which shall include:

i) preparing the provisional agenda for each AICHR Meeting with the support of the ASEAN Secretariat;
ii) leading in the preparation of reports of the AICHR and presenting such reports to the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting;
iii) coordinating with the Representatives in between AICHR meetings and with the relevant ASEAN bodies;
iv) representing the AICHR at regional and international events as entrusted by the AICHR;
v) undertaking other specific functions entrusted by the AICHR in accordance with the AICHR's Terms of Reference.







Adopted 12 March 2012


5. DOCUMENTATION 


5.1
The documentation and their distribution shall be done by the Chair with the assistance of the ASEAN Secretariat if the meeting is held in the Member State holding the Chairmanship of ASEAN; by the ASEAN Secretariat if the meeting is held at the ASEAN Secretariat; or by the Member State hosting the meeting with the assistance of the ASEAN Secretariat.

5.2 Delegations wishing to circulate documents for the meeting shall inform and transmit the documents to the Chair, the ASEAN Secretariat and the Member State hosting the meeting, as the case may be, at least five working days prior to the meeting.


6. SUMMARY RECORD

6.1 The ASEAN Secretariat shall prepare a draft Summary Record of discussion after every meeting of the AICHR. The draft Summary Record shall be conveyed to the Chair for his/her consideration before being circulated by the Chair to all Representatives for comments.

6.2 The Summary Record of previous meeting shall be finalised and adopted at the start of each subsequent meeting.

6.3 The ASEAN Secretariat shal be the depositary of all adopted Summary Records. It shall provide copies of the Summary Records to the AICHR Representatives. On request, the ASEAN Secretariat shall furnish the Member States' Permanent Missions to ASEAN and ASEAN National Secretariats.


7. PUBLIC COMMUNICATION

7.1
The AICHR may agree to keep the public informed about the outcome of its meeting by way of a press release by the Chair as agreed by AICHR. Should it be necessary, the Chair may hold a press conference as agreed by AICHR.

7.2 The contents of the press releases/press conferences/publications shall be determined by the AICHR.

7.3 Activities of the AICHR that it deems appropriate shall be regularly published and disseminated through the AICHR website and other media platforms.

7.4
The issue of any public statement or communication, written or oral, by the Chair or AICHR as an institution must have the approval of all Representatives.





Adopted 12 March 2012


8. ESTABLISHMENT OF WORKING GROUP OR TASK FORCE 


8.1
If deemed necessary, the AICHR may establish working groups or task forces on an ad-hoc basis to facilitate the AICHR's work in respect to any specific issues or matters that will be determined by the AICHR.

8.2
The Terms of Reference for such working groups or task forces shall be determined by the AICHR. If necessary, the working group or task force may, with the approval of AICHR, consult appropriate persons with relevant expertise on an ad-hoc basis.

9. REPORTING PROCEDURE

9.1 The AICHR shall submit an annual report on its activities, or other reports to the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting, pursuant to Article 6.6. of the AICHR's TOR.


9.2 For the preparation and adoption of the other reports, the AICHR shall gather relevant information deemed appropriate by the AICHR.

9.3
The release of the reports submitted by AICHR shall be decided by the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting.


10. RELATIONSHIP WITH OTHER ASEAN BODIES

10.1 As the overarching institution responsible for the promotion and
protection of human rights in ASEAN, the AICHR shall:

i)
recommend that all ASEAN sectoral bodies dealing with human rights, adhere to the international human rights standards as prescribed by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, and international human rights instruments to which ASEAN Member States are parties, as well as to ASEAN instruments relating to human rights, bearing in mind national and regional particularities and mutual respect for different historical, cultural and religious backgrounds, and taking into account the balance between rights and responsibilities;

ii)
work with all ASEAN sectoral bodies dealing with human rights to be in alignment and consistent with the AICHR;

iii)
work with all ASEAN sectoral bodies dealing with human rights through appropriate channels to determine the modalities for their ultimate alignment with the AICHR, pursuant to Article 6.8 of the AICHR's TOR. For this purpose, the modalities may include, among others, the following:






Adopted 12 March 2012


a. convening joint consultations with such sectoral bodies in their process of drafting terms of reference so that they will beconsistent with the AICHR as the overarching human rights institution in ASEAN;
b. working jointly with such sectoral bodies to ensure a review of their terms of reference if they are inconsistent with, or contrary to the role of AICHR as the sole overarching human rights institution, as provided for in the AICHR Terms of Reference and in paragraph 8 of the Cha-am Hua Hin Declaration of the ASEAN Heads of State, issued on 23 October 2009;
c. attending, upon invitation, meetings of other relevant ASEAN sectoral bodies, or convening joint meetings, where necessary and appropriate, on the promotion and protection of human rights;
d. furnishing each other's reports and publications;
e. conducting joint activities where possible;
f. convening special meetings, if deemed necessary, to discuss specific issues regarding the promotion and protection of human rights;
g. determining the sphere of activities in the event of duplication or inconsistency of activities by any subsidiary bodies;
h. considering to incorporate inputs from ASEAN sectoral bodies on the draft ASEAN Declaration on Human Rights.

iv.)
Provide advisory services and technical assistance on human rights matters to ASEAN sectoral bodies upon request, pursuant to Article 4.7 of the AICHR's TOR.

10.2 AICHR may, when required, request advisory services and technical assistance on human rights matters from relevant ASEAN sectoral bodies, pursuant to Article 4.7 of the AICHR's TOR. 1)

10.3 Engagement with ASEAN Sectoral Bodies, will be initiated by the Chair of AICHR, with the Chair of the relevant Sectoral Bodies. The format and level of participation of such engagement will be determined through consultations by AICHR and relevant sectoral bodies.


11. INTERACTION WITH ENTITIES ASSOCIATED WITH ASEAN AND OTHER STAKEHOLDERS

11.1 The AICHR may engage in dialogue and consultation with entities associated with ASEAN, including accredited Civil Society Organisations and other stakeholders, as provided for in Chapter V of the ASEAN Charter, pursuant to Article 4.8 of the AICHR's TOR.

11.2 The AICHR may consult, as may be appropriate, with other national, regional and international institutions and entities concerned with the promotion and protection of human rights, pursuant to Article 4.9 of the AICHR's TOR. Such consultations shall be conducted in a manner as mutually agreed upon by both the AICHR and the national institutions/entities concerned.

1) From the TOR of AICHR, Article 4.7




Adopted 12 March 2012


12. REPRESENTATION AT REGIONAL AND INTERNATIONAL EVENTS

12.1 Upon the receipt of the invitation to represent the AICHR at regional and international events pertaining to the promotion and protection of human rights, the Chair shall convey the invitation to all Representatives in a
speedy manner for their comments and suggestions. The Representatives' considerations shall include but is not limited to the fol owing:

i)
The events must be substantive and beneficial to the AICHR;

ii)
The inviting and requesting organisations must be in good standing and their work must be relevant to the work of AICHR;

iii)
The invitations should be addressed to either the AICHR as a whole or to the Chair.

12.2 Where the Chair is not able to represent the AICHR at regional and international events pertaining to the promotion and protection of human rights as entrusted by the AICHR, the Chair, with the consensus of AICHR, may request one of the Representatives to represent the AICHR instead. In that event, the same notification
procedure as specified in paragraph 12.1 above is applicable.

12.3 The Chair or any Representative of the AICHR may attend, on the basis of invitation and in his or her personal capacity, any events pertaining to the promotion and protection of human rights and such personal
capacity must therefore be specified. As the Chair or the Representative does not represent the AICHR in this case, the AICHR shall not be committed to support or endorse any deeds or statements made by the Chair or the Representative at such events.


13. RESOURCE MOBILISATION AND UTILISATION

13.1 Resource Mobilisation

13.1.1 The AICHR shall mobilise resources for the implementation of its Work Plan from ASEAN Member States as well as from various sources including the Endowment Fund, Dialogue Partners, donor countries, international agencies, the private sector, and non-governmental organisations, in accordance with Articles 8.4 and 8.5 of the AICHR's TOR.





Adopted 12 March 2012


13.1.2 Funding and other resources from non-ASEAN Member States shall be solely for human rights promotion, capacity building and education, pursuant to Article 8.6 of the AICHR's TOR.


13.2 Project Appraisal and Approval

13.2.1 Project proposals to implement the Work Plan shall be developed by the AICHR, ASEAN Member States, other ASEAN sectoral bodies or the ASEAN Secretariat, and shall be subject to the Rules of Procedure of the AICHR Fund, which will be included as an annex to the Guidelines. In the event that there is a situation which is not covered by the Rules of Procedure of the AICHR Fund, the ASEAN Secretariat's Document on Project Appraisal and Approval Process will be referred to.


13.3 Management of Fund

13.3.1 All funds under the purview of the AICHR shall be managed and disbursed in conformity with Article 8 of the AICHR's TOR, the respective guidelines of such funds and the ASEAN Secretariat Financial Rules and Procedures and the Rules of Procedure of the AICHR Fund.


13.4 Audit

13.4.1 The accounts of the funds under the purview of the AICHR which are entrusted to the ASEAN Secretariat shal be audited in conformity with Article 8 of the AICHR's TOR, the ASEAN Secretariat Financial Rules and Procedures and the Rules of Procedure of the AICHR Fund.

14 SUPPORT FROM THE ASEAN SECRETARIAT

14.1 In line with Article 7.2 of the TOR of AICHR, ASEAN Secretariat shall provide the necessary secretarial support to the AICHR to ensure its effective performance. Accordingly, ASEAN Secretariat will assign professional and sufficient human resources to carry out its duties and when possible provide support in the analysis of substantive subjects.

15. GENERAL AND FINAL PROVISIONS


15.1 Amendments to the Guidelines may be proposed by any Representative of AICHR. Decisions on the amendments shall be taken through consultation and consensus by AICHR.




Adopted 12 March 2012


15.2 Any difference arising from the interpretation of the Guidelines shall be settled by consultation and consensus, and on the basis of the AICHR's TOR.



15.3 In case of inconsistency between these Guidelines and the AICHR's Terms of Reference, the latter shall prevail.

15.4 These Guidelines shall be reviewed subsequent to any revision of AICHR's TOR as stipulated in Article 9.6 of AICHR's Terms of Reference.

15.5 These Guidelines shall come into force immediately after adoption by AICHR.

ADOPTED this day 12 March 2012


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Terms of Reference AICHR

ASEAN
INTERGOVERNMENTAL
COMMISSION ON
HUMAN RIGHTS
(Terms of Reference)
One Vision, One Identity, One Community



ASEAN
INTERGOVERNMENTAL
COMMISSION ON
HUMAN RIGHTS
(Terms of Reference)
One Vision, One Identity, One Community


The Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) was established on
8 August 1967. The Member States of the Association are Brunei Darussalam,
Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore,
Thailand and Viet Nam. The ASEAN Secretariat is based in Jakarta, Indonesia.
For inquiries, contact:
The ASEAN Secretariat
Public Outreach and Civil Society Division
70A Jalan Sisingamangaraja
Jakarta 12110
Indonesia
Phone : (62 21) 724-3372, 726-2991
Fax
: (62 21) 739-8234, 724-3504
E-mail : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
General information on ASEAN appears online at
the ASEAN Website: www.asean.org
Catalogue-in-Publication Data
Terms of Reference of ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human
Rights
Jakarta: ASEAN Secretariat, October 2009
16 p, 10.5 x 15 cm
323.59
1. Human rights ­ Civil rights
2. Regional Organization - Commission
3. Intergovernmental - ASEAN
ISBN 978-602-8411-23-3
The text of this publication may be freely quoted or reprinted with proper
acknowledgement.
Copyright ASEAN Secretariat 2009
All rights reserved


 


Terms of Reference
of the
ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights
Pursuant to Article 14 of the ASEAN Charter, the ASEAN
Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) shall
operate in accordance with the following Terms of Reference
(TOR):
1 PURPOSES
The purposes of the AICHR are:
1.1 To promote and protect human rights and fundamental
freedoms of the peoples of ASEAN;
1.2 To uphold the right of the peoples of ASEAN to live in peace,
dignity and prosperity;
1.3 To contribute to the realisation of the purposes of ASEAN as
set out in the ASEAN Charter in order to promote stability and
harmony in the region, friendship and cooperation among
ASEAN Member States, as well as the well-being, livelihood,
welfare and participation of ASEAN peoples in the ASEAN
Community building process;
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1.4 To promote human rights within the regional context,
bearing in mind national and regional particularities and
mutual respect for different historical, cultural and religious
backgrounds, and taking into account the balance between
rights and responsibilities;
1.5 To enhance regional cooperation with a view to complementing
national and international efforts on the promotion and
protection of human rights; and
1.6 To uphold international human rights standards as prescribed
by the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Vienna
Declaration and Programme of Action, and international
human rights instruments to which ASEAN Member States
are parties.
2 PRINCIPLES
The AICHR shall be guided by the following principles:
2.1 Respect for principles of ASEAN as embodied in Article 2 of
the ASEAN Charter, in particular:

a) respect for the independence, sovereignty, equality,
territorial integrity and national identity of all ASEAN
Member States;

b) non-interference in the internal affairs of ASEAN Member
States;

c) respect for the right of every Member State to lead
its national existence free from external interference,
subversion and coercion;
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d) adherence to the rule of law, good governance, the
principles of democracy and constitutional government;

e) respect for fundamental freedoms, the promotion and
protection of human rights, and the promotion of social
justice;

f) upholding the Charter of the United Nations and
international law, including international humanitarian
law, subscribed to by ASEAN Member States; and

g) respect for different cultures, languages and religions of
the peoples of ASEAN, while emphasising their common
values in the spirit of unity in diversity.
2.2 Respect for international human rights principles,
including universality, indivisibility, interdependence and
interrelatedness of all human rights and fundamental
freedoms, as well as impartiality, objectivity, non-selectivity,
non-discrimination, and avoidance of double standards and
politicisation;
2.3 Recognition that the primary responsibility to promote and
protect human rights and fundamental freedoms rests with
each Member State;
2.4 Pursuance of a constructive and non-confrontational
approach and cooperation to enhance promotion and
protection of human rights; and
2.5 Adoption of an evolutionary approach that would contribute
to the development of human rights norms and standards in
ASEAN.
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3 CONSULTATIVE INTER-GOVERNMENTAL BODY
The AICHR is an inter-governmental body and an integral part of
the ASEAN organisational structure. It is a consultative body.
4 MANDATE AND FUNCTIONS
4.1. To develop strategies for the promotion and protection of
human rights and fundamental freedoms to complement the
building of the ASEAN Community;
4.2. To develop an ASEAN Human Rights Declaration with a view
to establishing a framework for human rights cooperation
through various ASEAN conventions and other instruments
dealing with human rights;
4.3. To enhance public awareness of human rights among
the peoples of ASEAN through education, research and
dissemination of information;
4.4. To promote capacity building for the effective implementation
of international human rights treaty obligations undertaken
by ASEAN Member States;
4.5. To encourage ASEAN Member States to consider acceding
to and ratifying international human rights instruments;
4.6. To promote the full implementation of ASEAN instruments
related to human rights;
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4.7. To provide advisory services and technical assistance
on human rights matters to ASEAN sectoral bodies upon
request;
4.8. To engage in dialogue and consultation with other ASEAN
bodies and entities associated with ASEAN, including civil
society organisations and other stakeholders, as provided
for in Chapter V of the ASEAN Charter;
4.9. To consult, as may be appropriate, with other national,
regional and international institutions and entities concerned
with the promotion and protection of human rights;
4.10. To obtain information from ASEAN Member States on the
promotion and protection of human rights;
4.11. To develop common approaches and positions on human
rights matters of interest to ASEAN;
4.12. To prepare studies on thematic issues of human rights in
ASEAN;
4.13. To submit an annual report on its activities, or other reports
if deemed necessary, to the ASEAN Foreign Ministers
Meeting; and
4.14. To perform any other tasks as may be assigned to it by the
ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting.
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ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights


5 COMPOSITION
Membership
5.1 The AICHR shall consist of the Member States of ASEAN.
5.2 Each ASEAN Member State shall appoint a Representative
to the AICHR who shall be accountable to the appointing
Government.
Qualifications
5.3 When appointing their Representatives to the AICHR, Member
States shall give due consideration to gender equality, integrity
and competence in the field of human rights.
5.4 Member States should consult, if required by their respective
internal processes, with appropriate stakeholders in the
appointment of their Representatives to the AICHR.
Term of Office
5.5 Each Representative serves a term of three years and may
be consecutively re-appointed for only one more term.
5.6 Notwithstanding paragraph 5.5, the appointing Government
may decide, at its discretion, to replace its Representative.
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Responsibility
5.7 Each Representative, in the discharge of his or her duties,
shall act impartially in accordance with the ASEAN Charter
and this TOR.
5.8 Representatives shall have the obligation to attend AICHR
meetings. If a Representative is unable to attend a meeting
due to exceptional circumstances, the Government
concerned shall formally notify the Chair of the AICHR of
the appointment of a temporary representative with a full
mandate to represent the Member State concerned.
Chair of the AICHR
5.9 The Chair of the AICHR shall be the Representative of the
Member State holding the Chairmanship of ASEAN.
5.10 The Chair of the AICHR shall exercise his or her role in
accordance with this TOR, which shall include:

a) leading in the preparation of reports of the AICHR
and presenting such reports to the ASEAN Foreign
Ministers Meeting;

b) coordinating with the AICHR's Representatives in
between meetings of the AICHR and with the relevant
ASEAN bodies;

c) representing the AICHR at regional and international
events pertaining to the promotion and protection of
human rights as entrusted by the AICHR; and
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ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights



d) undertaking other specific functions entrusted by the
AICHR in accordance with this TOR.
Immunities and Privileges
5.11 In accordance with Article 19 of the ASEAN Charter,
Representatives participating in official activities of the
AICHR shall enjoy such immunities and privileges as are
necessary for the exercise of their functions.
6 MODALITIES
Decision-making
6.1 Decision-making in the AICHR shall be based on consultation
and consensus in accordance with Article 20 of the ASEAN
Charter.
Number of Meetings
6.2 The AICHR shall convene two regular meetings per year.
Each meeting shall normally be not more than five days.
6.3 Regular meetings of the AICHR shall be held alternately at
the ASEAN Secretariat and the Member State holding the
Chair of ASEAN.
6.4 As and when appropriate, the AICHR may hold additional
meetings at the ASEAN Secretariat or at a venue to be
agreed upon by the Representatives.
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6.5 When necessary, the ASEAN Foreign Ministers may instruct
the AICHR to meet.
Line of Reporting
6.6 The AICHR shall submit an annual report and other
appropriate reports to the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting
for its consideration.
Public Information
6.7 The AICHR shall keep the public periodically informed of its
work and activities through appropriate public information
materials produced by the AICHR.
Relationship with Other Human Rights Bodies within
ASEAN

6.8 The AICHR is the overarching human rights institution in
ASEAN with overall responsibility for the promotion and
protection of human rights in ASEAN.
6.9 The AICHR shall work with all ASEAN sectoral bodies dealing
with human rights to expeditiously determine the modalities
for their ultimate alignment with the AICHR. To this end, the
AICHR shall closely consult, coordinate and collaborate with
such bodies in order to promote synergy and coherence in
ASEAN's promotion and protection of human rights.
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ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights


7 ROLE OF THE SECRETARY-GENERAL AND ASEAN
SECRETARIAT
7.1 The Secretary-General of ASEAN may bring relevant issues
to the attention of the AICHR in accordance with Article 11.2
(a) and (b) of the ASEAN Charter. In so doing, the Secretary-
General of ASEAN shall concurrently inform the ASEAN
Foreign Ministers of these issues.
7.2 The ASEAN Secretariat shall provide the necessary
secretarial support to the AICHR to ensure its effective
performance. To facilitate the Secretariat's support to the
AICHR, ASEAN Member States may, with the concurrence
of the Secretary-General of ASEAN, second their officials to
the ASEAN Secretariat.
8 WORK PLAN AND FUNDING
8.1 The AICHR shall prepare and submit a Work Plan of
programmes and activities with indicative budget for a cycle
of five years to be approved by the ASEAN Foreign Ministers
Meeting, upon the recommendation of the Committee of
Permanent Representatives to ASEAN.
8.2 The AICHR shall also prepare and submit an annual budget
to support high priority programmes and activities, which
shall be approved by the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting,
upon the recommendation of the Committee of Permanent
Representatives to ASEAN.
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ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights


 


8.3 The annual budget shall be funded on equal sharing basis by
ASEAN Member States.
8.4 The AICHR may also receive resources from any ASEAN
Member States for specific extra-budgetary programmes
from the Work Plan.
8.5 The AICHR shall also establish an endowment fund which
consists of voluntary contributions from ASEAN Member
States and other sources.
8.6 Funding and other resources from non-ASEAN Member
States shall be solely for human rights promotion, capacity
building and education.
8.7 All funds used by the AICHR shall be managed and disbursed
in conformity with the general financial rules of ASEAN.
8.8 Secretarial support for the AICHR shall be funded by the
ASEAN Secretariat's annual operational budget.
9 GENERAL AND FINAL PROVISIONS
9.1. This TOR shall come into force upon the approval of the
ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting.
Amendments
9.2. Any Member State may submit a formal request for an
amendment of this TOR.
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ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights


9.3. The request for amendment shall be considered by the
Committee of Permanent Representatives to ASEAN in
consultation with the AICHR, and presented to the ASEAN
Foreign Ministers Meeting for approval.
9.4. Such amendments shall enter into force upon the approval of
the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting.
9.5. Such amendments shall not prejudice the rights and
obligations arising from or based on this TOR before or up to
the date of such amendments.
Review
9.6. This TOR shall be initially reviewed five years after its entry
into force. This review and subsequent reviews shall be
undertaken by the ASEAN Foreign Ministers Meeting, with
a view to further enhancing the promotion and protection of
human rights within ASEAN.
9.7. In this connection, the AICHR shall assess its work and
submit recommendations for the consideration of the ASEAN
Foreign Ministers Meeting on future efforts that could be
undertaken in the promotion and protection of human rights
within ASEAN consistent with the principles and purposes of
the ASEAN Charter and this TOR.
Interpretation
9.8. Any difference concerning the interpretation of this TOR
which cannot be resolved shall be referred to the ASEAN
Foreign Ministers Meeting for a decision.
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LIST OF MEMBERS OF THE HIGH LEVEL PANEL ON
AN ASEAN HUMAN RIGHTS BODY (HLP)
Brunei Darussalam
H.E. DATO SHOFRY ABDUL GHAFOR
Permanent Secretary
Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Cambodia
H.E. MR. OM YENTIENG
Advisor to the Royal Government of Cambodia
President of the Human Rights Committee of Cambodia
Indonesia
H.E. MR. RACHMAT BUDIMAN
Director of Political, Security and Territorial Treaties
Department of Foreign Affairs
Lao PDR
H.E. MR. BOUNKEUT SANGSOMSAK
Deputy Foreign Minister
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Malaysia
H.E. TAN SRI AHMAD FUZI ABDUL RAZAK
Ambassador ­at-Large
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
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ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights


Myanmar
H.E. MR. U MYAT KO
Secretary of Myanmar Human Rights Group
Director-General, General Administration Department
Ministry of Home Affairs
The Philippines
H.E. AMBASSADOR ROSARIO G. MANALO
Special Envoy
Department of Foreign Affairs
Singapore
H.E. MR. BILAHARI KAUSIKAN
Second Permanent Secretary
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Thailand
H.E. AMBASSADOR SIHASAK PHUANGKETKEOW
Permanent Representative of Thailand to the UN Office in
Geneva
Viet Nam
H.E. MR. PHAM QUANG VINH
Assistant Minister
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
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www.asean.org


 



 


ASEAN Human Rights Declaration

ASEAN HUMAN RIGHTS DECLARATION


WE, the Heads of State/Government of the Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (hereinafter referred to as "ASEAN"), namely Brunei Darussalam, the Kingdom of Cambodia, the Republic of Indonesia, the Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia, the Republic of the Union of Myanmar, the Republic of the Philippines, the Republic of Singapore, the Kingdom of Thailand and the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam, on the occasion of the 21st ASEAN Summit in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

REAFFIRMING our adherence to the purposes and principles of ASEAN as enshrined in the ASEAN Charter, in particular the respect for and promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, as wel as the principles of democracy, the rule of law and good governance;

REAFFIRMING FURTHER our commitment to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Charter of the United Nations, the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, and other international human rights instruments to which ASEAN Member States are parties;

REAFFIRMING ALSO the importance of ASEAN's efforts in promoting human rights, including the Declaration of the Advancement of Women in the ASEAN Region and the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women in the ASEAN Region;



 

CONVINCED that this Declaration will help establish a framework for human rights cooperation in the region and
contribute to the ASEAN community building process;

HEREBY DECLARE AS FOLLOWS:

GENERAL PRINCIPLES

1. All persons are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of humanity.

2. Every person is entitled to the rights and freedoms set forth herein, without distinction of any kind, such as race, gender, age, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, economic status, birth, disability or other status.

3. Every person has the right of recognition everywhere as a person before the law. Every person is equal before the law. Every person is entitled without discrimination to equal protection of the law.

4. The rights of women, children, the elderly, persons with disabilities, migrant workers, and vulnerable and
marginalised groups are an inalienable, integral and indivisible part of human rights and fundamental freedoms.

5. Every person has the right to an effective and enforceable remedy, to be determined by a court or other competent authorities, for acts violating the rights granted to that person by the constitution or by law.

6. The enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms must be balanced with the performance of corresponding duties as every person has responsibilities to all other individuals, the community and the society where one lives. It is ultimately the primary responsibility of all ASEAN Member States to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms.




7. All human rights are universal, indivisible, interdependent and interrelated. All human rights and fundamental
freedoms in this Declaration must be treated in a fair and equal manner, on the same footing and with the same
emphasis. At the same time, the realisation of human rights must be considered in the regional and national context bearing in mind different political, economic, legal, social, cultural, historical and religious backgrounds.

8. The human rights and fundamental freedoms of every person shall be exercised with due regard to the human
rights and fundamental freedoms of others. The exercise of human rights and fundamental freedoms shall be subject only to such limitations as are determined by law solely for the purpose of securing due recognition for the human rights and fundamental freedoms of others, and to meet the just requirements of national security, public order, public health, public safety, public morality, as well as the general welfare of the peoples in a democratic society.

9. In the realisation of the human rights and freedoms contained in this Declaration, the principles of impartiality,
objectivity, non-selectivity, non-discrimination, non-confrontation and avoidance of double standards and
politicisation, should always be upheld. The process of such realisation shall take into account peoples' participation, inclusivity and the need for accountability.





 




CIVIL AND POLITICAL RIGHTS

10. ASEAN Member States affirm all the civil and political rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
Specifically, ASEAN Member States affirm the following rights and fundamental freedoms:

11. Every person has an inherent right to life which shall be protected by law. No person shall be deprived of life save in accordance with law.

12. Every person has the right to personal liberty and security. No person shall be subject to arbitrary arrest, search, detention, abduction or any other form of deprivation of liberty.

13. No person shall be held in servitude or slavery in any of its forms, or be subject to human smuggling or trafficking in persons, including for the purpose of trafficking in human organs.

14. No person shall be subject to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

15. Every person has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of each State. Every person has the right to leave any country including his or her own, and to return to his or her country.

16. Every person has the right to seek and receive asylum in another State in accordance with the laws of such State and applicable international agreements.

17. Every person has the right to own, use, dispose of and give that person's lawfully acquired possessions alone or in association with others. No person shall be arbitrarily deprived of such property.




 
18. Every person has the right to a nationality as prescribed by law. No person shall be arbitrarily deprived of such nationality nor denied the right to change that nationality.

19. The family as the natural and fundamental unit of society is entitled to protection by society and each ASEAN Member State. Men and women of full age have the right to marry on the basis of their free and full consent, to found a family and to dissolve a marriage, as prescribed by law.

20. (1) Every person charged with a criminal offence shall be presumed innocent until proved guilty according to law in a fair and public trial, by a competent, independent and impartial tribunal, at which the accused is guaranteed the right to defence.


(2) No person shall be held guilty of any criminal offence on account of any act or omission which did not constitute a criminal offence, under national or international law, at the time when it was committed and no person shall suffer greater punishment for an offence than was prescribed by law at the time it was committed.

(3) No person shall be liable to be tried or punished again for an offence for which he or she has already been finally convicted or acquitted in accordance with the law and penal procedure of each ASEAN Member State.

21. Every person has the right to be free from arbitrary interference with his or her privacy, family, home or
correspondence including personal data, or to attacks upon that person's honour and reputation. Every person has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks.


 



22. Every person has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. All forms of intolerance,
discrimination and incitement of hatred based on religion and beliefs shall be eliminated.

23. Every person has the right to freedom of opinion and expression, including freedom to hold opinions without
interference and to seek, receive and impart information, whether orally, in writing or through any other medium of that person's choice.

24. Every person has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly.

25. (1) Every person who is a citizen of his or her country has the right to participate in the government of his or her country, either directly or indirectly through democratically elected representatives, in accordance with national law.

(2) Every citizen has the right to vote in periodic and genuine elections, which should be by universal and equal
suffrage and by secret ballot, guaranteeing the free expression of the will of the electors, in accordance with
national law.

ECONOMIC, SOCIAL AND CULTURAL RIGHTS

26. ASEAN Member States affirm all the economic, social and cultural rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Specifically, ASEAN Member States affirm the following:


 
27. (1) Every person has the right to work, to the free choice of employment, to enjoy just, decent and favourable conditions of work and to have access to assistance schemes for the unemployed.

(2) Every person has the right to form trade unions and join the trade union of his or her choice for the protection of his or her interests, in accordance with national laws and regulations.

(3) No child or any young person shall be subjected to economic and social exploitation. Those who employ
children and young people in work harmful to their morals or health, dangerous to life, or likely to hamper their normal development, including their education should be punished by law. ASEAN Member States should also set age limits below which the paid employment of child labour should be prohibited and punished by law.

28. Every person has the right to an adequate standard of living for himself or herself and his or her family including:
a. The right to adequate and affordable food, freedom from hunger and access to safe and nutritious food;
b. The right to clothing;
c. The right to adequate and affordable housing;
d. The right to medical care and necessary social services;
e. The right to safe drinking water and sanitation;
f. The right to a safe, clean and sustainable environment.

29. (1) Every person has the right to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical, mental and
reproductive health, to basic and affordable health-care services, and to have access to medical facilities.


 
(2) The ASEAN Member States shall create a positive environment in overcoming stigma, silence, denial and
discrimination in the prevention, treatment, care and support of people suffering from communicable diseases,
including HIV/AIDS.

30. (1) Every person shall have the right to social security, including social insurance where available, which assists him or her to secure the means for a dignified and decent existence.

(2) Special protection should be accorded to mothers during a reasonable period as determined by national laws
and regulations before and after childbirth. During such period, working mothers should be accorded paid leave or leave with adequate social security benefits.

(3) Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. Every child, whether born in or out of
wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

31. (1) Every person has the right to education.

(2) Primary education shall be compulsory and made available free to all. Secondary education in its different
forms shall be available and accessible to all through every appropriate means. Technical and vocational education shall be made generally available. Higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

(3) Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and the sense of his or her dignity. Education shall strengthen the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms in ASEAN Member States. Furthermore, education shall enable all persons to participate effectively in their respective societies, promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial and religious groups, and enhance the activities of ASEAN for the maintenance of peace.



 

32. Every person has the right, individually or in association with others, to freely take part in cultural life, to enjoy the arts and the benefits of scientific progress and its applications and to benefit from the protection of the moral and material interests resulting from any scientific, literary or appropriate artistic production of which one is the author.

33. ASEAN Member States should take steps, individually and through regional and international assistance and
cooperation, especially economic and technical, to the maximum of its available resources, with a view to
achieving progressively the ful realisation of economic, social and cultural rights recognised in this Declaration.

34. ASEAN Member States may determine the extent to which they would guarantee the economic and social rights found in this Declaration to non-nationals, with due regard to human rights and the organisation and resources of their respective national economies.

RIGHT TO DEVELOPMENT

35. The right to development is an inalienable human right by virtue of which every human person and the peoples of ASEAN are entitled to participate in, contribute to, enjoy and benefit equitably and sustainably from economic, social, cultural and political development. The right to development should be fulfilled so as to meet equitably the developmental and environmental needs of present and future generations. While development facilitates and is necessary for the enjoyment of all human rights, the lack of development may not be invoked to justify the violations of internationally recognised human rights.


 



36. ASEAN Member States should adopt meaningful people-oriented and gender responsive development programmes aimed at poverty alleviation, the creation of conditions including the protection and sustainability of the environment for the peoples of ASEAN to enjoy all human rights recognised in this Declaration on an equitable basis, and the progressive narrowing of the development gap within ASEAN.

37. ASEAN Member States recognise that the implementation of the right to development requires effective development policies at the national level as well as equitable economic relations, international cooperation and a favourable international economic environment. ASEAN Member States should mainstream the multidimensional aspects of the right to development into the relevant areas of ASEAN community building and beyond, and shall work with the international community to promote equitable and sustainable development, fair trade practices and effective international cooperation.

RIGHT TO PEACE

38. Every person and the peoples of ASEAN have the right to enjoy peace within an ASEAN framework of security and stability, neutrality and freedom, such that the rights set forth in this Declaration can be fully realised. To this end, ASEAN Member States should continue to enhance friendship and cooperation in the furtherance of peace, harmony and stability in the region.



 
COOPERATION IN THE PROMOTION AND PROTECTION OF HUMAN RIGHTS 


39. ASEAN Member States share a common interest in and commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms which shall be achieved through, inter alia, cooperation with one another as well as with relevant national, regional and international institutions/organisations, in accordance with the ASEAN Charter.

40. Nothing in this Declaration may be interpreted as implying for any State, group or person any right to perform any act aimed at undermining the purposes and principles of ASEAN, or at the destruction of any of the rights and fundamental freedoms set forth in this Declaration and international human rights instruments to which ASEAN Member States are parties.


Adopted by the Heads of State/Government of ASEAN Member States at Phnom Penh, Cambodia, this Eighteenth Day of November in the Year Two Thousand and Twelve, in one single original copy in the English Language.



Phnom Penh Statement

PHNOM PENH STATEMENT ON THE ADOPTION OF THE ASEAN HUMAN RIGHTS DECLARATION (AHRD)

 

WE, the Heads of State/Government of the Member States of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), on the occasion of the 21st ASEAN Summit in Phnom Penh, Cambodia;

REAFFIRMING ASEAN’s commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms as well as the purposes and the principles as enshrined in the ASEAN Charter, including the principles of democracy, rule of law and good governance;

REITERATING ASEAN and its Member States’ commitment to the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action, and other international human rights instruments, to which ASEAN Member States are parties as well as to relevant ASEAN declarations and instruments pertaining to human rights;  

ACKNOWLEDGING the importance of the role of the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR), as the overarching institution responsible for the promotion and protection of human rights in ASEAN, that contributes towards the building of a people-oriented ASEAN Community and as a vehicle for progressive social development and justice, the full realization of human dignity and the attainment of a higher quality of life for ASEAN peoples;


COMMENDING AICHR for developing a comprehensive declaration on human rights, in consultation with ASEAN Sectoral Bodies and other relevant stakeholders;

ACKNOWLEDGING the meaningful contribution of ASEAN Sectoral Bodies and other relevant stakeholders in the promotion and protection of human rights in ASEAN, and encourage their continuing engagement and dialogue with the AICHR;

DO HEREBY:

1. ADOPT the ASEAN Human Rights Declaration (AHRD);

2. AFFIRM our commitment to the full implementation of the AHRD to advance the promotion and protection of human rights in the region; and

3. REAFFIRM further our commitment to ensure that the implementation of the AHRD be in accordance with our commitment to the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Vienna Declaration and Program of Action, and other international human rights instruments to which ASEAN Member States are parties, as well as to relevant ASEAN declarations and instruments pertaining to human rights.

DONE at Phnom Penh, Kingdom of Cambodia, this Eighteenth Day of November in the Year Two Thousand and Twelve, in a single original in the English language.



For Brunei Darussalam:

HAJI HASSANAL BOLKIAH
Sultan of Brunei Darussalam

For the Kingdom of Cambodia:

SAMDECH AKKA MOHA SENA PADEI TECHO HUN SEN
Prime Minister


For the Republic of Indonesia:

SUSILO BAMBANG YUDHOYONO
President


For the Lao People’s Democratic Republic:

THONGSING THAMMAVONG
Prime Minister


For Malaysia:

DATO’ SRI MOHD NAJIB TUN ABDUL RAZAK
Prime Minister

 
For the Republic of the Union of Myanmar:

U THEIN SEIN
President
 

For the Republic of the Philippines:

BENIGNO S. AQUINO III
President


For the Republic of Singapore:

LEE HSIEN LOONG
Prime Minister
 

For the Kingdom of Thailand:

YINGLUCK SHINAWATRA
Prime Minister
 

For the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam:

NGUYEN TAN DUNG
Prime Minister


 

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