Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Switzerland, Liechtenstein


Human Rights Council 29th Session

Panel discussion on the effects of terrorism on the enjoyment by all persons of human rights and fundamental freedoms

Australian statement

30 June 2015

Today’s panel discussion is highly pertinent in light of the brutal attacks in Tunisia, Kuwait and France this past weekend. Australia condemns these attacks and terrorism in all its forms. The thoughts of all Australians are with the families of the victims of these barbaric acts of terror.

We reaffirm that States have primary responsibility to protect their populations from human rights abuses.

Australia believes it is incumbent upon States to ensure that any measures taken or means employed to counter terrorism comply with their obligations under international law, in particular the UN Charter, international human rights law and international refugee law.

We call upon States to help build the capacity of other UN Member States where necessary and upon request, to address the threat posed by terrorism. Australia welcomes and encourages states working together to help build such national, subregional or regional capacity.

The Council can play an important role in encouraging and assisting States to meet their human rights responsibilities and share experience.

We call upon States to investigate and report on atrocities and human rights abuses committed by terrorist groups, and associated non-state actors. In doing so, States should ensure those responsible are held to account, while affording fair-trial protections, strengthening other human rights and legal safeguards to prevent further atrocities and build resilience, and supporting survivors.