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21st Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights (ASEMHRS21): “Human Rights & Climate Change”

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Project Period:
16 Mar 2022 - 18 Mar 2022
Venue:
Luxembourg & online
Theme:
Climate change is a pressing global challenge in areas of development and environment and has serious impact on human rights. What actions do we have to take to tackle climate change? Read the Key Messages and Recommendations here.

 

“The ASEM is exactly the kind of multilateral platform that we need at a time when the world is facing multiple human rights challenges, including the triple planetary crises of climate change, pollution and biodiversity loss.

This seminar can make a difference, by contributing to deeper, more meaningful collaboration between Asia and Europe to advance human rights-based environmental action towards our joint goal of stopping the triple planetary crisis.”

(Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights)

“Human Rights and Climate Change” was the timely theme of the 21st Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights (ASEMHRS21), which took place 16-18 March 2022 in Luxembourg and online. The Seminar aimed to contribute to a deeper understanding of the interplay between human rights and climate change, as well as to develop recommendations and facilitate cooperation and peer-learning through the exchange of good practices, innovative ideas, and knowledge in the integration of human rights in climate change-related action.

The three-day hybrid event, which was hosted by the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, brought together over 150 experts, academics, and government officials and representatives of civil society and national human rights institutes from 48 ASEM Partner countries.

The Seminar was addressed by a number of speakers who reflected on the importance of strengthening human rights integration in climate change policies and actions, as well as enhancing human rights mechanisms for addressing environmental issues. The event was honoured to have the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms Michelle BACHELET and the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment, Dr David R. BOYD deliver the keynote addresses; with closing reflections from the European Union’s Special Representative for Human Rights, Mr Eamon GILMORE, among other experts. The Seminar was also privileged to have Mr Jean ASSELBORN, Minister of Foreign and European Affairs of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, and Ms Carole DIESCHBOURG, Minister for the Environment, Climate and Sustainable Development of Luxembourg to deliver the opening and closing addresses respectively.

The Seminar included a panel discussion on the theme “Migration, Human Rights and Climate Change” with experts drawn from academia and civil society and the United Nations. Prior to this, two European Investment Bank (EIB) representatives spoke briefly about the Bank’s approach to human rights-based climate action.

On the second day, four working groups were convened to discuss the following thematic areas:

  • Reinforcing socio-ecological resilience of communities through information and public participation
  • Promoting the full enjoyment of human rights by all persons affected by climate change
  • Green, equitable and inclusive: Innovative ideas on international cooperation to address the impacts of climate change on human rights
  • Taking stock of national and international human rights regimes to protect against the consequences of climate change

The thematic areas were laid out in the Seminar’s Background paper, written by Lead Rapporteur, Dr Annalisa SAVARESI, Associate Professor of International Environmental Law at the University of Eastern Finland.

Outputs

Based on the working group discussions and the contributions of the participants, two main outputs will be produced

  • the main recommendations of the working groups, which are disseminated to 53 ASEM Partners in the form of ‘Key Messages &
  • a detailed summary of the working group discussions (Seminar report)

The outcomes from the Seminar are disseminated to a wider audience through the annual Seminar Publication and Outreach activities. Furthermore, the outcomes will contribute to the development of a human rights training programme that will be offered to a relevant audience during the second half of 2022.

Organisers

The Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights series was launched in 1997 to deepen relations between civil society actors and governments in Asia and Europe on major human rights issues.

This Seminar series is organised by the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), the Raoul Wallenberg Institute (nominated by the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs), the French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, the Philippine Department of Foreign Affairs, the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China.

ASEF’s contribution is with the support of the European Union.

The 21st Informal ASEM Seminar on Human Rights was hosted by the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.

For information on the past Seminars, please follow this link.

Watch the full Seminar recordings & photos: 

Day 1 – Opening 

Day 3 – Closing 

 Photostream

Partners

Sponsors

Hosted by

Photos & Videos

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Amb. Leon FABER - Deputy Executive Director, ASEF

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Amb. Toru MORIKAWA - Executive Director of the Asia Europe…

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David R. BOYD - UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights…

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David R. BOYD - UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights…

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Ms Michelle Bachelet - United Nations High Commissioner for Human…

videos

Climate change is a major global issue of common concern…

videos

Climate change is a major global issue of common concern…

Documents


ASEMHRS21 – Seminar Report

Download

ASEMHRS21- Key Messages and Recommendations

Download

ASEMHRS21 – Background Paper

Download

ASEMHRS21 – Programme

Download

ASEMHRS21 – Concept Note: Human Rights and Climate Change

Download

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