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State Secretary Marn attends the 43rd session of the UN HRC on the right to a healthy environment

State Secretary Matej Marn is attending the high-level segment of today’s 43rd UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva. In his address, he stated that a group of countries, led by Slovenia, intends to open a discussion to declare the right to a healthy environment at the global level. During his visit, he also addressed the Conference on Disarmament and met the UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, the President of the Human Rights Council and the Director-General of the UN Office at Geneva.

 State Secretary Matej Marn during the high-level segment of the 43rd UN Human Rights Council (HRC) at Geneva

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State Secretary Matej Marn during the high-level segment of the 43rd UN Human Rights Council (HRC) at Geneva

State Secretary Marn stressed Slovenia's commitment to international order, respect for human rights and effective multilateralism. The United Nations were created 75 years ago to affirm the belief in fundamental human rights and dignity, he recalled, warning about the effect that technological development and artificial intelligence could have on human rights. In light of numerous anniversaries of key documents on gender equality, he emphasised the significance of women and girls’ rights and activities around the world for achieving sustainable development and maintaining peace.

Furthermore, he also pointed out some of Slovenia’s thematic priorities, such as the rights of minorities, the elderly, and children, as well as human rights education and training. He reflected on the preventive role of the HRC when it comes to the violation of human rights around the world and urged the countries to cooperate with its mechanisms. The State Secretary went on to stress the important role of civil society, along with advocates for human rights, condemning any attack on them. Finally, he encouraged further efforts to ensure effective operation of the HRC, despite the currently challenging financial situation of the UN.

During the high-level segment of the Conference on Disarmament, State Secretary Marn expressed concern about the digression from international instruments on disarmament. As one of the key international forums, the Conference can contribute to preserving and further developing the mechanisms for effective control over armament, nuclear disarmament and nuclear non-proliferation. The Conference must thus continue with the substantive work, where non-member states, including Slovenia, can also make a significant contribution, stressed the State Secretary.

During his visit to Geneva, State Secretary Marn met for talks with the UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, Nada Al-Nashif, the President of 14th cycle of the Human Rights Council and Austrian Ambassador, Elisabeth Tichy-Fisslberger, and the Director-General of the UN Office at Geneva, Tatiana Valovaya. He reassured the Deputy High Commissioner and the President of the HRC that Slovenia remains committed to human rights and assured support to the High Commissioner, her office and the work of the HRC. He advocated further effective functioning of the UN mechanisms in relation to human rights. This afternoon, he is due to meet the Director-General of the UN Office at Geneva to discuss the possibilities of closer cooperation, especially in efforts to strengthen environmental protection.

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