Joint Press Release of the 3rd Interface Meeting between AICHR and ACWC

The 3rd Interface Meeting between the ASEAN Intergovernmental Commission on Human Rights (AICHR) and the ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children (ACWC) was held on 1 March 2023 at the ASEAN Secretariat.

AICHR and ACWC welcomed the strengthened cooperation and growing engagement between the two bodies on the rights of women and children in ASEAN over the past years.

AICHR and ACWC underlined the importance of ensuring synergy and coherence in the promotion and protection of human rights in ASEAN, and reaffirmed their commitment and collective efforts to enhancing alignment of work across relevant ASEAN sectoral bodies dealing with human rights.

AICHR and ACWC updated each other on their work plans, respectively the AICHR Five-Year Work Plan 2021-2025 and the ACWC Work Plan 2021-2025, as well as the programmes and initiatives to be implemented in 2023 to advance the fulfillment of rights of women and children in ASEAN.

The Meeting shared views, experiences and good practices on the promotion and protection of human rights in ASEAN with a focus on gender and business and human rights, climate change and environmental rights, rights to science, concerns over disinformation, misinformation and intolerance, general comments and concluding observations of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, and UN Convention on the  Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, child protection and participation, the gender-responsive treatment of women prisoners, women migrant workers, ending gender-based violence in the workplace, among others.

The Meeting was updated on AICHR planned activities for 2023 on women and children’s rights, which include the AICHR Cross-Sectoral Dialogue on the Effective Implementation of ASEAN Commitments on Human Rights of Women and Children, the Regional Workshop on Referral Systems, the ASEAN Dialogue on the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, as well as activities on environment and climate change.

The Meeting discussed key areas of cooperation and collaboration, including the implementation of the Regional Plan of Action on Women, Peace and Security (WPS) and the ASEAN Gender Mainstreaming Strategic Framework to ensuring the rights of most vulnerable women and children, including women prisoners and women rights in workplace and those in contact with the justice system, be upheld and promoted.

In the spirit of unity, solidarity and mutual cooperation, AICHR and ACWC also deliberated their priority areas and thematic issues for possible joint activities and potential forms of alignment between the two bodies, particularly in ensuring increased women’s and children’s participation in the implementation of regional initiatives upholding their rights.

AICHR and ACWC reaffirmed their commitment toward strengthening cross-pillar cross-sectoral coordination and collaboration on human rights and looked forward to the succeeding interface meetings between the two bodies as a sustained joint initiative going forward. The Meeting expressed its appreciation to AICHR Indonesia and the ASEAN Secretariat for the excellent arrangements of the meeting.

The Interface Meeting was co-chaired by Ms. Wahyuningrum, Representative of Indonesia to AICHR and Chair of AICHR in 2023, and by Ms. Yanti  Kusumawardhani, Indonesia’s Representative on Children’s Rights to ACWC and Chair of ACWC. It was attended by Representatives/Alternate Representatives of AICHR, Representatives of ACWC, and officials from the ASEAN Secretariat.

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