Appeal by human rights and pro-democracy NGOs of Mongolia
To Mr. Demberel Damdin, Speaker of the Parliament of Mongolia,
Mr. Bat-Erdedne Badmaanyambuu, Chief of the Legal Standing Committee of the Parliament of
The National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia (hereinafter the Commission) is mandated by its law (provision 3.1.) to protect and promote human rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution, other laws and international conventions, and monitor their implementation. The Commission is obliged to follow the principle of independence in its work on protecting human rights, freedoms and legal interests of citizens. This principle must be implemented in any critical social and political circumstances in the country. Unfortunately, the Commission failed
to adhere to this principle during the events of July 1 st , 2008.
T he Commission ’s actions during July 1st events clearly demonstrated that the law on the
National Human Rights Commission lacks important provisions to ensure its independence,
human rights expertise and experience of candidates for commissioners, their pluralism in
representation and open, transparent and participatory nomination and selection process in
appointment of commissioners recommended by the Paris Principles. There is sufficient
evidence of inevitable urgent need to amend the law appropriately.
We take this opportunity to inform that a proposal to amend the law of the Commission in
compliance with the Paris Principles has been developed by civil society. We urge you to
consider this proposal and stand ready to cooperate with you to ensure the law is improved to
conform with the international standards. In building the capacity of the Commission and commissioners to work independently, appointment process of commissioners, their representation, human rights expertise and experience of candidates are of paramount importance. However, the current appointment practice displays a politically biased, non-transparent process and disregard to human rights expertise and experience of candidates. Due to this flaw in the process, a candidate fails to obtain the trust and support of citizens, does not express and represent diverse interests of people. We regard that this leads to the weakening of the accountability of commissioners and the Commission leading to dependence on government agencies “lead by ” political parties.
We hold that the current selection criteria for candidates are inappropriate, according to which a candidate is required to possess high qualifications in law and politics but the crucially important human rights expertise and experience in the protection of rights and freedoms are required only at “appropriate level .” Nomination for candidate s is limited to only 3 bodies: the President, the Legal Standing Committee of the Parliament of Mongolia, and the Supreme Court. This limitation makes the appointment process de facto political appointment.
We call upon the Parliament of Mongolia to stop this practice and render the nomination, selection and appointment process open, transparent and participatory.
At this moment, when a new chief commissioner is to be appointed, we urge you to pay special attention to the fulfillment of the principle of independence of the Commission in appointing the new members of the commission, and ensure that a person with extensive expertise and experience in protecting and promoting human rights and strong capacity to work independently from political parties, government organizations and economic interest groups is appointed as to the position of the Chief Human Rights Commissioner. We demand that the process of selection and appointment of the chief commissioner be participatory, open and transparent.
Center for Citizens’ Alliance
Centre for Human Rights and Development
Democracy Education Centre
Food Sovereignty Coalition
Human Rights Information Network
Law and Human Rights Centre
MONFEMNET National Network of Mongolian Women’s NGOs
National Centre Against Violence
National Green Movement
Open Society Forum
Oyu Tolgoi Watch
Steps Without Borders
Transparency International Mongolia
Women for Social Progress Movement