ROUNDTABLE REPORT: A Swedish National Human Rights Institution: Exploring Models and Options

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In January 2015, after Sweden´s human rights performance had been examined through the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), the Human Rights Council of the UN recommended that Sweden establish an independent national human rights institution (NHRI). In June 2015, the Swedish government accepted this recommendation and announced that it would initiate the work of establishing such an institution. As a response to the announcement, various human rights organizations in Sweden formed a network in order to discuss what a Swedish NHRI could look like. The Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law (RWI) was part of that network. In June 2016, members of the network and other relevant actors were invited to RWI in Lund to take part in a roundtable discussion on the future role and institutional set-up of a Swedish NHRI. The objective of the roundtable was to explore different models and options available for the establishment of a Swedish NHRI. The topics of discussion were:
• An exploration of different NHRI models
• Why do we need a National Human Rights Institution in Sweden?
• Quasi- Jurisdictional Competence: the Individual complaints handling mandate of NHRIs
• The Way Forward for Sweden

The participants in the workshop consisted of representatives from the Finnish NHRI, representatives from the municipality of Malmö and Lund, representatives from Swedish civil society organizations, and experts from RWI.