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16th Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights: “Persons with Disabilities and Human Rights”

Governance Events


Project Period:
8 - 10 November 2016
Beijing, China

The 16th Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights was held on 8th-10th November 2016 in Beijing, China, on the theme of “Persons with Disabilities and Human Rights”.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that about 1 billion people (15 percent of the world’s population) experience some form of disability, with about 80 percent of persons with disabilities living in developing countries.

Perceptions of persons with disabilities vary across the world; persons with disabilities often face discriminations at multiple levels which can affect them emotionally, physically and economically. Many of them do not have access to necessary support and aid, while some do not even have access to their basic rights; they suffer from socio-cultural and economic barriers to participation in mainstream society, to distinct violations of their individual rights.

The focus of the 16th Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights was on the promotion and protection of the rights of persons with disabilities, in 2016, from a human rights-based approach to the topic.

Participation in the 16th Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights took place in four simultaneous closed-door working group discussions, each focusing on one of the four following topics:

WG1 – Participation in political and cultural life

WG2 – Social and economic inclusion

WG3 – Legal status, justice and remedy

WG4 – National implementation and international cooperation

For a more detailed overview please see the seminar Concept Note.

This Seminar series is co-organised by the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), the Raoul Wallenberg Institute (nominated by the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs), the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs and the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.

ASEF has been the seminar secretariat since 2000.

The 16th Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights was hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China. Given the nature of the Seminar, participants were invited individually by the co-organisers; there was no open call for participation.

For more information about the seminar series, please see the Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights page.



Funded by the European Union

Project Updates

Photos & Videos


Working Group IV on National Implementation and International Cooperation


Working Group III Legal Status, Justice and Remedy


Working Group II on Social and Economic Inclusion


Working Group I on Political and Cultural Life


Seminar Report


Opening plenary session – Professor Gerard QUINN


Opening plenary session – Mr Yannis YALLOUROUS


Key Messages


Concept Paper


Celebrating Human Rights Day with Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights


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