India, EU underline commitment to human rights

India and the European Union have underscored their commitment to human rights and the shared principles and values of democracy, freedom, and rule of law, an Indian statement said

Apr 13, 2021
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India and the European Union have underscored their commitment to human rights and the shared principles and values of democracy, freedom, and rule of law, an Indian statement said.

The two sides expressed the need to foster greater engagement on human rights issues and exchanged views on strengthening human rights, including in social, economic and cultural spheres during their ninth dialogue on the subject in New Delhi on Monday.

The Dialogue was held in pursuance of the decision taken at the 15th India-European Union Summit in July 2020, the Indian External Affairs ministry press release said.

“As the world's two largest democracies, India and the EU reiterated their commitment to human rights. In this context, they emphasised the universality, indivisibility, interdependence and interrelatedness of all human rights.

“During the Dialogue, the participants exchanged views on strengthening human rights, including in social, economic and cultural spheres.

“They discussed civil and political rights, freedom of religion or belief, women empowerment, children's rights, rights of minorities and vulnerable groups,” the ministry said.

 Both the EU and India expressed the need to foster greater engagement on human rights issues, ‘based on internationally recognised human rights laws and standards’, and recognised the importance of strengthening the Human Rights mechanisms for the promotion of human rights and the role of national human rights institutions, civil society actors and journalists in this regard.

During the dialogue, the EU reiterated its opposition to capital punishment ‘in all cases and without exception’.

The two sides discussed enhancing India-EU cooperation in international fora, particularly at the UN General Assembly and the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC).

In this regard, the Indian delegation proposed to hold regular exchanges between their respective Permanent Missions to the UN based in Geneva and to explore cooperation at the UNHRC.

“India and the EU reiterated their commitment to the shared principles and values of democracy, freedom, rule of law and respect for human rights. Both parties looked forward to the next edition of the Dialogue next year,” the statement said.

The Human Rights Dialogue was co-chaired by Joint Secretary for Europe West in the Ministry of External Affairs of India, Sandeep Chakravorty, and the Ambassador of the European Union to India, Ugo Astuto.

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