23 April 2013, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates – UNITAR delivered a successful workshop entitled “Introduction to the International Human Rights Protection Mechanism and Architecture” for UAE government Officials and Civil Servants.

The workshop, held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, focused on the structure and functioning of the International Human Rights protection architecture. It started with an overview of the historical evolution of the human rights normative framework prior and after World War I. The participants were familiarised with the charter and treaty-based mechanisms leading to the Vienna Conference of 1993 that helped establish the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and reminded the UN Member States of the universality, indivisibility and interdependence of rights and for the need to mainstream them at the international level. The second part of the workshop was devoted to discussions related to the Human Rights Council, the Universal Periodic Review, the National Human Rights Institutions and the challenges the UAE faces in this new human rights body. The workshop ended with a roundtable focusing on the role of civil society.

Fatsah Ouguergouz, Judge and Vice-President of the African Court of Human and Peoples' Rights, and other senior UN and International Human Rights Expert made great contributions to the workshop.

Thanks to the interactive design of the workshop and the opportunity to share experiences, the participants’ feedback was very positive. At the end of the workshop, many participants expressed their gratitude. All of them mentioned that the training was very useful and that they will use the skills and knowledge developed over the three days in their respective functions.