Human rights are rights inherent to all human beings, whatever our nationality, place of residence, sex, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, language, or any other status. All people are equally entitled to our human rights without discrimination. These rights are all interrelated, interdependent and indivisible.

Universal human rights are often expressed and guaranteed by law, in the forms of treaties, customary international law, general principles and other sources of international law. International human rights law lays down obligations of Governments to act in certain ways or to refrain from certain acts, in order to promote and protect human rights and fundamental freedoms of individuals or groups.

In case if the human rights of an individual are violated, allegations of such violations can be brought directly to the attention of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights It should however be noted that, for an allegation to be considered by competent UN bodies, specific documentation requirements must be met. It may therefore be advisable to convey any information deemed relevant through local NGOs which are used to documenting and submitting cases to UN human rights mechanisms on behalf of individuals or groups.

The following minimum information must be provided to all special procedures in order for the alleged human rights violation to be assessed:

  • Identification of the person(s) or organization(s) submitting the information;
  • The full name of the alleged victim(s), their age, sex, and place of residence or origin;
  • Identification of as many details as possible (name, age, sex, place of residence or origin) in cases involving a group or community;
  • Date and place of incident (approximate, if exact date is not known);
  • A detailed description of the circumstances of the incident in which the alleged violation occurred;
  • Identification of the alleged perpetrator(s), name(s) if known and/or title/function, and sus- pected motive;
  • Where relevant, specify if steps have been taken at the national level (e.g. have police been contacted, have inquiries been conducted, are other national authorities involved, the position - if any of the Government);
  • Where relevant, specify if steps have been taken at the international level (e.g. if other inter- national mechanisms have been activated)
  • The identity of the source of information will be kept confidential.
  • Some mandate holders have devised specific forms or questionnaires to collect information for communications.

Cases of alleged human rights violations can be submitted either by post :
Special Procedures Division
8-14 Avenue de la Paix
1211 Geneva 10

by fax: +41 22 917 90 08;

or by e-mail: please read the webpage on Communications and send your submission to:

For further information on how to submit communications on alleged human rights violations please see information on the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. The list of human rights experts to address can be found following the link.

Інформаційний бюлетень