Japan’s human rights record to be reviewed by Universal Periodic Review


9 November 2017


GENEVA (9 November 2017) – Japan’s human rights record will be examined by the UN Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Working Group for the third time on Tuesday, 14 November 2017 in a meeting that will be webcast live.

Japan is one of the 14 States to be reviewed by the UPR Working Group during its upcoming session taking place from 6 to 17 November.  Japan’s first and second UPR reviews took place in May 2008 and October 2012, respectively.

The documents on which the reviews are based are: 1) national report - information provided by the State under review; 2) information contained in the reports of independent human rights experts and groups, known as the Special Procedures, human rights treaty bodies, and other UN entities; 3) information provided by other stakeholders including national human rights institutions, regional organizations and civil society groups.

Among the issues raised in the above-mentioned documents are: the application of the death penalty; steps to establish an independent national human rights institution; ensuring equality of women in the labour market; measures taken to combat discrimination, including that based on sexual orientation and gender identity; investigating and prosecuting offences involving the sexual exploitation of children; ensuring freedom of the media; the Broadcast Act; the Protection of Specially Designated Secrets Act; the impact of the nuclear accident in Fukushima in 2011 and its effects on the human rights of vulnerable groups; steps to resolve the issue of “comfort women”; combatting discrimination against racial or ethnic minorities; the rights of Ainu, Ryukyu and Okinawa communities to their traditional land and natural resources; state policies on asylum seekers; legal protections for migrant workers; and steps taken to improve prison conditions.

The three reports serving as the basis for the review of Japan on 14 November can be found here.

Location: Room 20, Palais des Nations, Geneva
Time and date: 09.00 – 12.30, Tuesday, 14 November (Geneva time, GMT +1 hour)

The UPR is a unique process which involves a periodic review of the human rights records of all 193 UN Member States.  Since its first meeting was held in April 2008, all 193 UN member States have been reviewed twice within the first and second UPR cycles.  During the third UPR cycle, States are again expected to spell out steps they have taken to implement recommendations posed during their previous reviews which they committed to follow-up on, as well as to highlight recent human rights developments in the country.

The delegation of Japan will be headed by Mr Yoshifumi Okamura, Representative of the Government of Japan

The three country representatives serving as rapporteurs (“troika”) for the review of Japan are: Belgium, Qatar and Togo.

The webcast of the session will be at

The list of speakers and all available statements to be delivered during the review of Japan will be posted on the UPR Extranet at the following link.

The UPR Working Group is scheduled to adopt the recommendations made to Japan at 17.30 on 16 November.  The State under review may wish to express its positions on recommendations posed to it during their review.  The recommendations will be shared with the media on this day in advance.   


For more information and media requests, please contact Rolando Gómez at +41 (0) 22 917 9711 / , Sarah Lubbersen at +41 (0) 22 917 9689 / or Cédric Sapey at +41 (0) 22 917 9751 /

To learn more about the Universal Periodic Review, visit:

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