The 20thAnnual Meeting was attended by 160 participants representing 28 NHRIs, civil society, Special Rapporteurs of the United Nations, and International Coordinating Committee of the National Institutions for the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights and Freedoms (ICC).
The first day session began with the workshop on fund development issues facilitated by Ms. Karen Van sacker, Vice President, Global Philanthropy. This workshop aimed at assisting Forum Councillors to develop an understanding of fundraising theory and practice, along with their role in it. The workshop was held with the support of practical, hands-on guidance for members to organise and facilitate awareness programs and donor cultivation meetings within the framework of other APF programs. In the afternoon of 26 August the Meeting continued with the APF – NGO dialogue on NHRIs and Human Rights Defenders facilitated by APF Consultant Dr Muhyieddeen Touq, and Mr. Michel Forst, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, participated as Speaker of this session.
On Day 2 APF Forum Councillors and Annual General Meeting was first chaired by Dr. Ali Bin Smaikh Al-Marri, Chairperson of APF and Chairperson of the National Human Rights Committee of Qatar. In the first part of the morning session, Election of the next Chairperson of APF was held, and Prof. Byambadorj Jamsran, Chief Commissioner of the National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia was elected as the new Chair of the Asia Pacific Forum. Following the election, Chief Commissioner Byambadorj Jamsran continued chairing the General Meeting.
During the morning session the Asia Pacific Forum adopted its Strategic Plan (2015 – 2020), discussed ICC Chairperson’s Report, APF’s representation within the ICC, and location of 22nd APF Annual Meeting and Biennial Conference in 2017 (Chairperson), elected APF Deputy Chairpersons (Qatar and Afghanistan), considered APF Directors and Financial Report, and considered and approved Audited Accounts, APF Annual Operations Plan 2015-2016. Within the scope of general business topics, Dr. Sima Samar, Chairperson of Afghan Independent Human Rights Commission made presentation on establishment of a regional mechanism for human rights in South Asia, Professor Gillian Triggs, Chief Commissioner of Australian Human Rights Commission, on death penalty in the region, Dr, Jacqueline Miller, Commissioner of New Zealand Human Rights Commission, on New Zealand National Plan of Action, and Mr. Lee Sung-Ho, Chairperson of the National Human Rights Commission of Korea, on ASEM Conference and ICC Special Session in Korea. At the request of Hong Kong Equal Opportunity Commission and National Human Rights Commission of Pakistan, the Chair of the General Meeting permitted their delegates to make presentation on the mandates and activities of the respective institutions.
Within the scope of APF’s representation to the ICC, members of Sub-Committee on Accreditation and Business and Human Rights Working Group, who are to be appointed as a member of ICC Bureau automatically, were elected in this session. Dr. Mousa Burayzat, Commissioner General of the National Centre for Human Rights of Jordan was elected as a member of the SCA representing the APF. Before the election of a new member of the ICC Working Group on Business and Human Rights, Commissioner Dr. Oyunchimeg of the National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia nominated herself to the Working Group from the floor. After making consensus and withdrawal of the Chairpersons of the NHRIs of Australia and Qatar, she was endorsed as a member of the ICC Working Group on Business and Human Rights.
The Biennial Conference of the Asia Pacific Forum of the National Human Rights Institutions was opened on 28 August 2015. Mr. Elbegdorj Tsakhia, President of Mongolia, addressed opening speech to the participants, and a delegate of the Secretariat of the State Great Khural read the message of Mr. Enkhbold Zandaakhuu, Speaker of the State great Khural, to the APF 20thGeneral Meeting at the opening session.
Day 3 sessions mainly covered the issue of prevention of torture in the region and role NHRIs could play in this area.
The 20th Annual Meeting and Biennial Conference of the APF was held and closed successfully on 28 August 2015.