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UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies

The UN human rights treaty bodies are composed of independent experts, elected by States for terms of four years, who monitor the implementation of core international human rights treaties.

Overall, the work of each treaty body is aimed at ensuring that each State party to the relevant treaty fulfils its obligations, thereby allowing individuals to enjoy the human rights protected by that treaty.

There are ten human rights treaty bodies, namely:

Human Rights Committee (CCPR)

Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR)

Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD)

Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW)

Committee against Torture (CAT)

Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT)

Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC)

Committee on Migrant Workers (CMW)

Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)

Committee on Enforced Disappearances (CED) 

The functions of these bodies include examining State reports together with additional information submitted from civil society organisations and national human rights institutions on the implementation of the relevant treaty, considering individual complaints, conducting inquiries and issuing general comments providing guidance on the interpretation by the body of treaty provisions.  

Treaty body reviews therefore provide a means for the implementation by States of their human rights obligations to be tested and enhanced.