Kosovo civil society organisations help fight discrimination, publish fourth annual human rights report
Thirty-seven human rights civil society organisations (CSOs) representing various Kosovo communities published their fourth annual report on the situation of human rights in Kosovo on 10 May 2023, with support from UNMIK and the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).
The Civil Society Report on Human Rights in Kosovo puts forward 163 recommendations to institutions on how to improve the protection and realisation of civil, political, economic, social, and cultural rights. For the first time, the report includes a chapter on non-discrimination and equality, and applies the human rights indicators developed by the OHCHR in assessing the main problems, human rights violation, and challenges.
"I would like to congratulate all the civil society organisations on their fourth annual human rights report, which is of great quality. I hope that the report and its recommendations will deepen the dialogue between Kosovo authorities and human rights organisations and lead to a greater accountability of institutions in ensuring the respect for human rights across the board," said Jerome Bouyjou, Chief of UNMIK’s Human Rights Office and the Representative of OHCHR in Kosovo, at the report launching event.
The report, covering the January-December 2022 period, was launched at the presence of human rights defenders, the Ombudsperson Institution, and members of the judiciary and international community.
On 17 May, the Prime Minister of Kosovo, Albin Kurti, invited the representatives of the CSOs involved in drafting the report to discuss its recommendations. During the meeting, Mr. Kurti emphasised the commitment of his government to human rights, equality, and inclusiveness, highlighting the current proceedings in the Assembly of Kosovo for the inclusion of the [UN] Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in the Constitution.
Representatives of the human rights CSOs also met with Monica McWilliams, former Chief Commissioner of the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission on 11 May and discussed the report’s recommendation with her. Ms. McWilliams who was a signatory to the Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland said that she was encouraged by the quality of the discussion between the civil society organisations and the institutions in Kosovo and found it to be “a good example of building trust and confidence” between communities.
The human rights CSOs will continue monitoring the human rights situation in Kosovo to bring forward the most pressing issues to the attention of the authorities and advocate for the rights of all disadvantaged groups and communities.
The full Civil Society Report on Human Rights in Kosovo in 2022 is available at the following links: