OHCHR in the South-East Asia Region
Over the years, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has increased its presence in the field, reaching out more and more and giving a voice to the people who need it the most.
OHCHR presences away from Headquarters are a strategic entry point for promoting and protecting human rights at the country level; mainstreaming human rights, that is, integrating a human rights perspective into the work of the United Nations Country Teams; and helping strengthen national institutions and civil society.
There are a number of ways in which OHCHR field presences assist in efforts to make human rights a reality; not only do they monitor the human rights situation in countries, but they also assist in building the capacity of Member States and other duty-bearers to address human rights issues. The following are OHCHR's field presences in the South-East Asia Region.
Regional Office for South-East Asia in Bangkok
OHCHR's regional offices address the regional dimensions of human rights issues, including specific thematic issues; engage national actors in countries within the region following an assessment of needs and in accordance with OHCHR's regional strategies; and provide support to UN Country Teams in the region. Where relevant, they also work closely with and support regional organizations.
Regional offices vary in size, with a minimum of three professional officers. Their activities, analyses, conclusions and recommendations are integrated in the High Commissioner's annual report to the Human Rights Council. Details on the activities of the Regional Office for South-East Asia can be found under the Activities section of this website and in the relevant sections of the OHCHR Strategic Management Plan and OHCHR Annual Report of Activities.
The OHCHR Regional Office for Asia-Pacific was established in Bangkok in 2002 in order to strengthen OHCHR's presence and partnerships in the region. The UN Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) hosts the Regional Office under a Memorandum of Intent signed with the High Commissioner for Human Rights in February 2001.
In the 2006-2007 biennium, the Office was reorganized into a new Regional Office for South-East Asia, covering eleven countries: Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao People's Democratic Republic, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Timor-Leste and Viet Nam.
The Regional Office for South-East Asia in Bangkok represents the High Commissioner for Human Rights, Ms. Navanethem Pillay. The Regional Representative of the High Commissioner for Human Rights is currently Mr. Homayoun Alizadeh.
Country Office in Cambodia
The Geneva-based Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights is the part of the United Nations Secretariat charged with promoting and protecting human rights. The Cambodia Country Office represents the High Commissioner for Human Rights.
The OHCHR Cambodia Country Office is the oldest field presence of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. It has been through several transformations and traces its origins back to the United Nations Transitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC). The Country Office was established in October 1993. Its mandate derives from the Paris Peace Accords which called for the United Nations to continue to monitor the human rights situation in Cambodia after the withdrawal of UNTAC.
Resolution 1993/6 of the Commission on Human Rights, in accordance with the Paris Peace Accords, gave the then United Nations Centre for Human Rights a mandate which combines monitoring, protecting and public reporting functions with technical assistance and advisory services. The Centre for Human Rights, including its Cambodia office, was formally merged with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in 1998. A Memorandum of Understanding between the High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Royal Government of Cambodia for the implementation of a technical cooperation programme on human rights was last renewed in October 2007 for an eighteen-month period.
The Office has three inter-linked thematic programmes which monitor and assess certain aspects of the human rights situation and Cambodia and advocate for the protection of human rights and the prevention of the reoccurrence of violations of these rights. On the basis of their assessment of the situation, each programme seeks long-term solutions through technical assistant to government and other partners.
Mr. Christophe Peschoux
Tel: (855) 23 987 671 or 672
Fax: (855) 23 212 579
Address: N 10, Street 302, P.O.Box 108,
Phnom Penh - Cambodia
Human Rights Components of UN Peace Missions/Timor-Leste
OHCHR is the leading authority for human rights, but all UN entities have a role to play in promoting and protecting human rights through and within their operations in the field. In this respect, OHCHR seeks to integrate human rights in all components of UN Peace Missions with four priorities: ensuring justice and accountability in peace processes; preventing and redressing human rights violations; building capacities and strengthening national institutions; and mainstreaming human rights in all UN programmes.
As at June 2009, OHCHR supports in the region the human rights components of the Peace Missions in Timor-Leste.
Mr. Louis Gentile
Head of the Human Rights Component
United Nations Integrated Mission in Timor-Leste (UNMIT)
Address: Human Rights Unit UNMIT Dili,
Postal address: P.O. Box 2436 Darwin,
NT 0801, Australia
Tel: (61) 8 8946 3900, Ext. 6557
Fax: (61) 8 8946 3901/2.