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COMMITTEE ON THE RIGHTS OF PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES HOLDS EIGHTH SESSION FROM 17 TO 28 SEPTEMBER
Committee to Review Reports Presented by China, Argentina and Hungary
13 September 2012

The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities will hold its eighth session from 17 to 28 September at the Palais Wilson in Geneva during which it will review reports presented by China, Argentina and Hungary on how those countries implement the provisions of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

On Monday, 17 September, in the morning, a representative of the Secretary-General will open the meeting.  The Committee will adopt its agenda and programme of work and hear the report of the Chairperson on activities undertaken between the seventh and eighth sessions of the Committee.  This will be followed by a meeting on cooperation with other United Nations bodies, specialized agencies, disabled persons’ organizations and other competent bodies.

On Tuesday, 18 September, the Committee will start its consideration of the initial report of China in the afternoon.  The review will last for two meetings, concluding on Wednesday, 19 September at 1 p.m.  The Committee will take up the initial report of Argentina on Wednesday, 19 September in the afternoon and Thursday, 20 September in the morning; and the report of Hungary on Thursday, 20 September in the afternoon and Friday, 21 September in the morning. 

The Committee will issue its concluding observations and recommendations on the reports at the end of the session on Friday, 28 September.

During the session the Committee will consider working methods, and will adopt a list of issues on the initial report by Paraguay.  It will also review the progress of work of the various working groups established to draft the general comments decided on by the Committee.  To date, the Committee has decided to establish working groups on accessibility (article 9) and legal capacity (article 12).  Another working group on access to public transportation and airline policies was also established and will report to the Committee.  The Committee will further discuss organizational matters related to the half day of general discussion on women and girls with disabilities, to be held in April 2013, during the ninth session of the Committee.  The Committee will also consider complaints submitted under the Optical Protocol to the Convention.

According to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, States parties are required to submit their initial reports to the Committee two years after the entry into force of the Convention for them.  The Convention has been signed by 153 States and ratified by 118 States and 1 regional organization, while 72 countries have ratified the Optional Protocol to the Convention.  Currently, there are 29 initial reports awaiting review 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

At present there are 118 States parties to the Convention and 1 regional organization which has ratified this instrument.  They are: Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belgium, Belize, Benin, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burkina Faso, Canada, Cape Verde, Chile, China, Colombia, Cook Islands, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Djibouti, 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), Italy, Jamaica, Jordan, Kenya, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Latvia, Lesotho, Liberia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Maldives, Mali, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Mongolia, Montenegro, Morocco, Mozambique, Myanmar, Namibia, Nauru, Nepal, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Niger, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Portugal, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Republic of Moldova, Romania, Rwanda, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Sudan, 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.

The current membership of the Committee is as follows: Ms. Amna Ali Al-Suwaidi (Qatar); Mr. Mohammed Al-Tarawneh (Jordan); Mr. Monsur Ahmed Chowdhury (Bangladesh); Ms. María Soledad Cisternas Reyes (Chile); Ms. Theresia Degener (Germany); Mr. Gábor Gombos (Hungary); Ms. Fatiha Hadj-Salah (Algeria); Mr. Hyung Shik Kim (Republic of Korea); Mr. Lotfi Ben Lallahom (Tunisia); Mr. Stig Langvad (Denmark); Ms. Edah Wangechi Maina (Kenya); Mr. Ronald McCallum (Australia); Ms. Ana Peláez Narváez (Spain); Ms. Silvia Judith Quan-Chang (Guatemala); Mr. Carlos Rios Espinosa (Mexico); Mr. Damjan Tatic (Serbia); Mr. Germán Xavier Torres Correa (Ecuador); Ms. Jia Yang (China).

Mr. McCallum is Committee Chairperson; Ms. Cisternas Reyes, Ms. Maina and Ms. Yang are Vice-Chairpersons; and Ms. Degener is Rapporteur.

Further information is available on the Committee’s webpage.


Programme of Work

Monday, 17 September     a.m.  Opening of the Committee
p.m.  Cooperation with other United Nations bodies and
specialized agencies

Tuesday, 18 September   a.m.   closed meeting
                                       p.m.  Consideration of initial report of China  
CRPD/C/CHN/1, CRPD/C/CHN-HKG/1 andRPD/C/CHN-MAC/1

Wednesday, 19 September  a.m.  China (continued)
                                             p.m. Consideration of initial report of Argentina CRPD/C/ARG/1

Thursday, 20 September      a.m. Argentina (continued)
                                             p.m. Consideration of initial report of Hungary  CRPD/C/HUN/1

Friday, 21 September          a.m. Hungary (continued)
                                             p.m.  closed meeting

Friday, 28 September          a.m.   closed meeting
                                             p.m.   Closing of session


For use of the information media; not an official record

CRPD12/005E


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