The mission of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) is to work for the protection of all human rights for all people; to help empower people to realize their rights; and to assist those responsible for upholding such rights in ensuring that they are implemented.
Institutionally, OHCHR is committed to strengthening the United Nations human rights programme and to providing it with the highest quality support. OHCHR is committed to working closely with its United Nations partners to ensure that human rights form the bedrock of the work of the United Nations.
The OHCHR is mandated to promote and protect the enjoyment and full realization, by all people, of all rights established in the Charter of the United Nations and in international human rights laws and treaties. OHCHR is guided in its work by the mandate provided by the General Assembly in resolution 48/141, the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and subsequent human rights instruments, the Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action the 1993 World Conference on Human Rights, and the 2005 World Summit Outcome Document.
The mandate includes preventing human rights violations, securing respect for all human rights, promoting international cooperation to protect human rights, coordinating related activities throughout the United Nations, and strengthening and streamlining the United Nations system in the field of human rights. In addition to its mandated responsibilities, the Office leads efforts to integrate a human rights approach within all work carried out by United Nations agencies.
After the most recent restructuring within the organization globally, the OHCHR Stand-alone Office in Kosovo has been officially closed on 28 February 2015. Yet, the organization kept its presence in Kosovo by assigning one Human Rights Officer to UN Kosovo Team who will be in charge for the implementation of two joint programs together with other UN agencies, Support to Transitional Justice in Kosovo and Support to Addressing Gender Based Violence.
The project Support to Transitional Justice in Kosovo aims to achieve a measurable enhancement of the capacities of critical institutional and civil society actors to engage in and steer an inclusive, participatory, victim-centred and gender-sensitive transitional justice process in Kosovo. This, in turn, will contribute to the creation of a more conducive environment for a successful transitional justice process in Kosovo. In this manner, the Joint Project will contribute to vindicating the dignity of victims, improving community relations, strengthening civic trust, and, in the long term, to reconciliation and the prevention of future violence.
The new project Support to Addressing Gender Based Violence (GBV) expands to municipalities North Mitrovica/ë, Zvečan/Zveçan, Leposavić/q and Zubin Potok in northern Kosovo building on the results and lessons learned from the previous phase implemented in pilot municipalities Gjilan/Gnjilane, Dragash/Dragaš and Gjakovë/Đakovica. The main objectives of the project are:
- To raise awareness about gender based violence and enhance access to services for survivors of domestic violence in;
- To strengthen the formal/informal service chain of GBV prevention, protection and reintegration services through catalytic interventions in pilot municipalities;
- To enhance the economic independence of (potential) survivors of domestic violence and provide counselling for families and perpetrators;
- To disseminate programme results, capitalising on lessons learned for scaling-up in other municipalities.
In 2011 the OHCHR Stand-alone Office in Kosovo paid particular attention to non-discrimination by building partnerships with civil society organizations. This was mainly done through joint advocacy efforts to amend the Anti-Discrimination Law and by providing legal aid to alleged victims of discrimination with a special focus on the marginalized groups. In Mitrovicë/a, the OHCHR carried out capacity building projects on human rights for civil society organisations and other local stakeholders, as well as regular monitoring of the human rights situation in the north. The OHCHR Stand-alone Office in Kosovo is an active partner and contributor to the UNKT Common Development Plan (CDP 2011- 2015 equivalent to UNDAF) and the UN Strategic Framework (UNSF 2010-2012).
Ljubiša Baščarević, Human Rights Officer, Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
Office addresses: UN Common Premises, Zagrebi street 39, Prishtinë/Priština and Kralja Petra I street, No. 81, Zvečan/Zveçan
e-mail: [email protected]; phone: +377(0)44 509 403; +381(0)65 8293 620