The United Arab Emirates delivered a joint statement on behalf of over 69 countries at the 56th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva, focusing on the adverse impacts of climate change on human rights.

Khalifa Almazrouei, Counsellor at the UAE mission in Geneva, highlighted on behalf of these countries that the effects of climate change are undeniable and increasingly pervasive, significantly impacting all economic sectors.

Almazrouei stressed the importance of adopting an approach based on states’ obligations under international human rights law to address the disproportionate impacts of climate change on the most vulnerable individuals. These communities, often dependent on agriculture and fishing for their livelihoods, face inadequate housing, long hours of outdoor work, and climate-related income reductions without the means to adapt. Prioritising their resilience is crucial to address these challenges effectively.

Member states were urged to ensure the respect, promotion, and protection of human rights in the formulation and implementation of climate policies and programmes. The statement also affirmed that climate justice is inherently linked to development and that building resilience to climate change is essential for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals and maintaining development progress.

Furthermore, the statement commended the historic decision made during COP27 to establish the loss and damage fund as a new dedicated financial mechanism. Moreover, it celebrated the success of the UAE’s Presidency of COP28, which secured pledges exceeding US$600 million.

The statement further emphasised the importance of enhancing the existing climate change regime, particularly in the areas of adaptation, resilience, and loss and damage, for the benefit of developing countries. Almazrouei, delivering the joint statement, reaffirmed the countries’ commitment to engaging fruitfully and constructively with all relevant stakeholders and partners to achieve common goals.

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