Jun 17, 2018 Last Updated 6:23 AM, Jun 15, 2018

The Pacific and Central Asia share a peculiar similarity. They are the only locations not covered by a regional human rights mechanism, such as a human rights commission or court.A call for increased regional engagement on human rights has been rising from within the Pacific region, including the Pacific Islands Forum Leaders. In part, this is a response to the Pacific region having the lowest ratification rate of international human rights treaties. Somewhat understandable, given the obvious barriers faced by small islands states, including limited capacity and resources to implement treaty conditions and the ongoing burden of treaty reporting. The Pacific Islands Forum Leaders, through the Pacific Plan, have committed Forum Islands states to working together to ratify and implement international human rights conventions and meet reporting requirements. They have agreed to explore possible means for pooling resources and integrating legal institutions and legislative services. To this end, a working group has been mandated by the Forum Regional Security Council to investigate a possible regional human rights mechanism in the Pacific. In November, the Forum Secretariat, in partnership with the Secretariat of the Pacific Community......

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