Thomas Hammarberg – Sweden

He says: “Of course we are watching closely the issue on arrests of journalist. Moreover, we are generally evaluating human rights situation and for this reason we attach due importance to other fields. In December last year government approved action plan on human rights. The issue we take interest in most of all is to clarify to what extent exact and in details this plan is being realized now”. (full text, Sept 18, 2007).

Watch Thomas Hammarberg’s video, Sept 07, 2007: Not Returning IDPs to Their Homeland Violates Human Rights: Council of Europe’s Commissioner on Human Rights.

Download “Human Rights for Human Dignity: a primer on economic, social and cultural rights“.

Thomas Hammarberg - Sweden.jpg.

Thomas Hammarberg – Sweden

The Economist magazine asked a very important question on 22 March 2007: “Are not access to jobs, housing, health care and food basic rights too?” According to The Economist, such rights are not human rights: “…few rights are truly universal, and letting them multiply weakens them.”

Amnesty International disagrees. The right to adequate food, the highest attainable standard of health and education are as much human rights as are freedom of expression or the right to a fair trial. Nearly sixty years ago, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted recognising the principle that human rights are universal and indivisible — that all human rights should be enjoyed by all people. This is at the heart of AI’s mission … (full text).

Thomas Hammarberg was elected Commissioner for Human Rights on 5 October 2005 by the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly.

He took up his position on 1 April 2006, succeeding the first Commissioner, Mr Alvaro Gil-Robles. He was nominated for the post of Commissioner for Human Rights by the Swedish government.

Prior to his appointment, he spent several decades working on the advancement of human rights in Europe and worldwide. He has held the key posts of Secretary General of the Stockholm-based Olof Palme International Center (2002-05), Ambassador of the Swedish Government on Humanitarian Affairs (1994-2002), Secretary General of “Save the Children” Sweden (1986-92), and Secretary General of the London-based Amnesty International (1980-86).

Mr Hammarberg also held several special positions during these years. In 2001-03, he served as Regional Adviser for Europe, Central Asia and the Caucasus for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. For several years, he was the Swedish Prime Minister’s Personal Representative for the UN Special Session in Children, as well as the Convener of the Aspen Institute Roundtables on “Human Rights in Peace Missions”. Between 1996 and 2000, he was Kofi Annan’s appointed representative (SRSG) for human rights in Cambodia. He also participated in the work of the Refugee Working Group of the multilateral Middle East Peace Process.

Over the past 25 years, Mr Hammarberg has published widely on various human rights issues, particularly on children’s rights, refugee policy, minority issues, xenophobia, Roma rights as well as international affairs and security. He is also well known for his presentations and lectures on human rights at various governmental and academic institutions. (Council of Europe).

Thomas Hammarberg on wikipedia.

Council of Europe (CE) Commissioner for Human Rights Thomas Hammarberg ended his visit to Azerbaijan, APA reports. The Commissioner told the press conference that the main aim of his visit was to assess the situation on human rights in Azerbaijan. (full text, Sept. 07, 2007).

APA’s local bureau reports that Thomas Hammarberg first met with head of Ganja executive power Eldar Azizov. Following the meeting, the Commissioner arrived at Nizami court and met chairman of the court Ali Tagiyev. The visitor concerned himself with the conditions and expressed satisfaction with the present situation. Following this, Mr. Hammarberg familiarized with the regional office of Ombudsman’s Office that will be opened in Ganja. The COE official also visited Justice Ministry’s jail #2 in Ganja and concerned himself with the detention conditions of prisoners. He will visit Ganja hospital of diseases of nervous system and children’s house in the second half of the day. (APA).

Bio: on Cong Creator CC; on the European Parliament.

The picture emerging from these studies is that children who grow up in poverty are much more vulnerable than others. They are more likely to be in poor health, to underachieve in school, to get into trouble with the police, to fail to develop vocational skills, to be unemployed or badly paid and to be dependent on social welfare.

This does not mean that all poor children are failing in their development. However, they risk being disadvantaged.

Child poverty is usually connected to poverty among those adults who care for them. It should, however, be understood that poverty has a more profound impact on children. It affects them not only in their immediate present, but also in the long term. Moreover, children themselves can do little to improve their situation. As a consequence, they greatly depend on public policy to grow out of poverty. This is particularly true when it comes to access to education and health services.

The UNICEF studies also show that there are large differences on child poverty between European countries, also between those with a similar economic situation in general. This seems to underline that the problem to a large extent relates to political priorities – child poverty can and should be reduced through determined policy measures. (full text).

Statement by Thomas Hammarberg, Commissioner for Human Rights at Press Conference in Ljubljana.

Read him: on Google’s book search; on Google’s Scholar-search; on Google’s blog-search; on ENOC, European Network of Ombudspersons for Children; on 1st Quarterly Activity Report 2007 by Thomas Hammarberg, Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe (1st January to 31st March 2007); on Europarådets kommissarie för mänskliga rättigheter, Thomas Hammarberg.


International conference in Strasbourg to discuss child protection issues, Sept, 17, 2007;

“Zerkalo”: Woman in Political Life of Azerbaijan;;

Article (global campaign for free expression).

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