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Human Rights Council Hears Statements on the Impacts of Climate Change

UN Human Rights3 March 2014: The 25th session of the Human Rights Council opened with high-level statements expressing concern regarding the situation in a number of countries and regions around the world, and outlining some of the efforts countries are undertaking in the promotion and protection of human rights. A number of statements highlighted the linkages between human rights and climate change.

Maldives underscored it had managed "to put a human face to the right of all to live in a safe environment and for the protection of the rights of all humans affected by climate change."

Viet Nam indicated its willingness to "discuss candidly and constructively," on issues such as sustainable development, social-economic-cultural rights, as well as the rights of vulnerable groups and the needs and circumstances of developing countries that faced new challenges, such as climate change, environmental degradation, and the exhaustion of natural resources in their cause of human right protection and promotion.

The Philippines recalled that Typhoon Haiyan had caused "indescribable devastation, human suffering and loss of life and property" in his country. He added that there was no doubt that the typhoons that had made landfall in his country "were a result of climate change," stressing that they affected the most vulnerable, and underlining their adverse economic, social and cultural impacts. He reiterated his concern about climate change and informed that he "would partner with others to ensure that climate change and human rights remained on the Council's agenda." The 25th session of the Council is taking place from 3-28 March 2014, at the UN Office in Geneva, Switzerland. [OHCHR Press Release] [25th Session Website]