Basseterre, St. Kitts, January 21, 2021 (Ministry of Foreign Affairs): On Tuesday, 19 January 2021, St. Kitts and Nevis participated virtually in its 3rd Universal Periodic Review (UPR) at the 37th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC), based in Geneva. Ms. Kaye Bass, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, head of the delegation, introduced St. Kitts and Nevis’ National Report and highlighted, inter alia, St Kitts and Nevis’ response to Covid19. In her intervention during the interactive dialogue, Ms. Bass highlighted human rights-related initiatives the government has undertaken within the last four and a half years on areas such as Social Protection, Gender Empowerment, Education, Health, and its fulfillment to obligations under Human Rights Instruments which it has ratified. At the end of the review, St. Kitts and Nevis received recommendations from 63 UN Member states which will be taken into consideration.
“The timely submission and content of our current National Report as well as our participation in this important Review, reiterate St Kitts and Nevis’ commitment not only to this process but to human rights in general,” said Permanent Secretary Bass.
“This is evidenced by St. Kitts and Nevis’s diligent efforts and subsequent success in implementing more than half of the recommendations of its previous review. This is a significant achievement for the smallest country in the Western Hemisphere and considering the ongoing exogenous and economic challenges it continues to face,” she said.
This unique UPR process which involves a periodic review of the human rights records of all 193 UN Member States, began in April 2008 to 2011 (1st Cycle) followed by another from 2011-2016 (2nd Cycle). At each successive cycle, States are expected to highlight the steps they have taken to implement recommendations supported during their previous reviews, as well as to highlight recent human rights developments in the country.
The other members of the delegation included Ms. Janelle Lewis, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Community Development, Gender Affairs and Social Services, Ms. Asha DeSuza, Second Secretary at the Permanent Mission of St. Kitts and Nevis to the UN, Mr. Sheldon Henry, and Mrs. Natasha Burt, Foreign Service Officers.