ACCESSIBILITY AT UNOG A A A A The United Nations in the Heart of Europe


Committee to Consider the Reports of Austria, Australia and El Salvador 
29 August 2013

The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities will hold its tenth session from 2 to 13 September at the Palais Wilson in Geneva, during which the Committee will consider the reports of Austria, Australia and El Salvador on how these States parties implement the provisions of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

On Monday, 2 September, in the morning, a representative of the Secretary-General will open the meeting. The Committee will then adopt its agenda and programme of work, discuss the submission of reports, and consider other organizational matters. It will also hear the report of the Chairperson on activities undertaken between the ninth and tenth sessions, and adopt the report of the ninth session. Following that, the Committee will be updated on the reports received from States parties under article 35 of the Convention. The Committee will also discuss how to strengthen cooperation with United Nations bodies, specialized agencies and non-governmental organizations.

In the afternoon, the Committee will begin its consideration of the initial report of Austria. The review will last for two meetings, concluding on Tuesday, 3 September, at 1 p.m. The Committee will then consider the initial report of Australia on 3 September, in the afternoon, and on 4 September, in the morning. The Committee will begin its consideration of the initial report of El Salvador at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, 4 September. Following a United Nations holiday on Thursday, 5 September, the Committee will resume its consideration of the report of El Salvador on 6 September, at 10 a.m. A public meeting with States parties to the Convention will be held on 10 September, at 10 a.m., to discuss the Committee’s methods of work.

In private, the Committee will adopt lists of issues on the initial reports of Azerbaijan, Costa Rica and Sweden, which will be examined in future sessions. It will also review the progress of work of the working groups on women with disabilities, accessibility, and legal capacity, established to draft the general comments decided on by the Committee. Complaints submitted under the Optional Protocol to the Convention and the conduct of inquiries will also be considered by the Committee.

Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Adopted on 13 December 2006 by the General Assembly, the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Protocol entered into force on 3 May 2008.

The purpose of the Convention is to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedoms by all persons with disabilities, and to promote respect for their inherent dignity. Persons with disabilities include those who have long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments which in interaction with various barriers may hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others.

States parties undertake to ensure and promote the full realization of all human rights and fundamental freedoms for all persons with disabilities without discrimination of any kind on the basis of disability. States Parties recognize that all persons are equal before and under the law and are entitled without any discrimination to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law. Specific measures which are necessary to accelerate or achieve de facto equality of persons with disabilities shall not be considered discrimination under the terms of the present Convention.

States parties reaffirm that every human being has the inherent right to life and have committed themselves to take all necessary measures to ensure its effective enjoyment by persons with disabilities on an equal basis with others. States Parties reaffirm that persons with disabilities have the right to recognition everywhere as persons before the law. States Parties recognize that persons with disabilities enjoy legal capacity on an equal basis with others in all aspects of life.

Each State party is obliged to submit to the Committee, through the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, a comprehensive report on measures taken to give effect to its obligations under the present Convention and on the progress made in that regard, within two years after the entry into force of the present Convention for the State Party concerned. Thereafter, States parties shall submit subsequent reports at least every four years and further whenever the Committee so requests.

States Parties to the Convention

The Convention has been signed by 155 States. At present there are 132 States and 1 regional organization which have ratified this instrument. They are: Afghanistan, Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, China, Colombia, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Djibouti, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Ethiopia, European Union, France, Gabon, Germany, Ghana, Greece, Guatemala, Guinea, Haiti, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Iraq, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lesotho, Liberia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Malta, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Norway, Oman, Pakistan, Palau, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Russian Federation, Rwanda, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Sudan, Swaziland, Sweden, Syrian Arab Republic, Thailand, The former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Togo, Tunisia, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Uganda, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United Republic of Tanzania, Uruguay, Vanuatu, Yemen, and Zambia.

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is the first human rights convention to provide for ratification by regional integration organizations, such as the European Union. The European Union ratified the Convention in December 2010.

Committee Membership

The members of the Committee are elected for a term of four years and shall be eligible for re-election once.

Mr. Mohammed Al-Tarawneh (Jordan), Mr. Monthian Buntan (Thailand), Ms. Maria Soledad Cisteras Reyes (Chile), Ms. Theresia DEGENER (Germany), Mr. Hyung Shik Kim (Republic of Korea), Mr. Lofti Ben Lallahom (Tunisia), Mr. Stig Langvad (Denmark), Mr. László Gábor Lovaszy (Hungary), Ms. Edah Wangechi Maina (Kenya), Mr. Ronald McCallum (Australia), Ms. Diane Mulligan (United Kingdom), Mr. Martin Babu Mwesigwa (Uganda), Ms. Safak Pavey (Turkey), Ms. Ana Pelaez Narvaez (Spain), Ms. Silvia Judith Quan-Chang (Guatemala), Mr. Carlos Rios Espinosa (Mexico), Mr. Damjan Tatic (Serbia), and Mr. Germán Xavier Torres Correa (Ecuador).

Ms. Cisternas Reyes is Chairperson. The Vice Chairpersons are Ms. Degener, Mr. McCallum and Mr. Rios Espinosa. Mr. Mwesigwa is the Rapporteur.

Further information is available on the Committee’s webpage.

Programme of Work

Monday, 2 September

10 a.m. Opening of the session
3 p.m. Consideration of the initial report of Austria CRPD/C/AUT/1
Tuesday, 3 September

10 a.m. Austria (continued)
3 p.m. Consideration of the initial report of Australia CRPD/C/AUS/1
Wednesday, 4 September

10 a.m. Australia (continued)
3 p.m. Consideration of the initial report of El Salvador CRPD/C/SLV/1

Thursday, 5 September
United Nations Holiday

Friday, 6 September

10 a.m. El Salvador (continued)
3 p.m. Closed meeting

Tuesday, 10 September
10 a.m. Meeting with States parties to the Convention (public)
3 p.m. Closed meeting

Friday, 13 September
10 a.m. Closed meeting
3 p.m. Closed meeting
5.30 p.m. Closing (public)

To arrange an interview with a Committee member, please contact Jorge Araya (+41 22 917 9106 /

For more information and other media requests, please contact Liz Throssell (+41 (0) 22 917 9434/

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