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Belize committed to reporting on two human rights conventions

Representatives from about nine government ministries today concluded a three-day training on human rights. The focus was on the process of preparing national reports under the International Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, CERD, and the International Convention of the rights of all Migrant Workers and Members of their Families, ICMW. CEO in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Pat Andrews says that the training comes ahead of the preparation of the two reports that Belize is internationally obliged to submit under the conventions mentioned. The session was facilitated in part by May Karin Marianne Friedrich, Human Rights Officer at the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

Pat Andrews – CEO, Ministry of Foreign Affairs

“We had a three-day seminar that had to do with all new suggestion developments, roadmaps that we could use in trying to comply with our part of our commitment to human rights so this was something that was very important for us and for our development.”

May Karin Marianne Friedrich – Human Rights Officer, Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

“Focusing on the convention to protect all migrant workers and also the convention that looks into elimination of all racial discrimination so in specifically these two treaties that we have been focus on to prepare state parties to report. I think what’s been great we’ve seen here is  the political will so it’s correct that Belize has signed up to several of the treaties and In this regard they didn’t report to two of this treaties that I mentioned and therefore we are doing capacity building effort because I understand the political side that there is an interest to prioritize specifically these two treaties and to make the report this year.”

Dalila Ical – Reporter

“You are talking about compliance, what is the next move from here?”

Pat Andrews – CEO, Ministry of Foreign Affairs

 “Well execution we will continue to engage tomorrow for example tomorrow we are meeting with civil society and we will be talking to them about the same topic and really what we are hoping to achieve and I think we have achieved is to get some ambassadors that will be able to go ahead and spread the word and basically let Belize know how we will be complying with these reporting environments.”

The training was organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, along with the Immigration and Nationality Department and the Office of the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights. Senior officials from key ministries of Government participated in the workshop.