UN Special Rapporteur Report on British Government November 2016

Report of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence on his mission to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The purpose of the mission was to assess the work undertaken by the Government, at both the national and devolved levels, in the areas of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence, and to advise on further efforts to address the legacy of the violence committed in Northern Ireland between 1968 and 1998, during the “Troubles”.

About the Special Rapporteur

The Special Rapporteur is mandated to conduct official visits to States to provide technical assistance and advisory services to Governments upon request. These visits provide an opportunity to examine the transitional justice measures that have been taken to address gross violations of human rights and serious violations of international humanitarian law, to identify gaps and challenges, and to make recommendations thereon. The visits are intended to provide an independent and impartial assessment, for use by all actors on the ground. At the end of the visit, the Special Rapporteur generally holds a press conference during which he shares his preliminary observations and recommendations for the consideration of the Government concerned and other stakeholders. The Special Rapporteur then presents his final observations and recommendations to the Human Rights Council (in September every year) and may undertake follow-up to issues raised during the visit as necessary.

During the visits, the Special Rapporteur usually meets with the Heads of State and of Government, relevant Government Ministers, heads of law enforcement authorities, members of the legislative and the judiciary, representatives of independent human rights institutions, representatives of civil society, the media, United Nations agencies, among others. The Special Rapporteur will usually begin a visit in the capital city, and then proceed to other cities or towns, as well as to rural areas of particular relevance to the mandate. Visits usually take place of a period up to 10 days, but the duration may change depending upon the size of the country or the complexity of the issues to be addressed.

Some States have issued standing invitations to all special procedures of the United Nations Human Rights Council, while for others the mandate holder writes to the State requesting to express his interest in carrying out such a visit.