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Global Mechanisms – The United Nations

This global mechanisms section encompasses official documents including resolutions, statements, letters, and more that pertain to tobacco control and human rights at the international level, but do not fall under a human rights treaty body.

UN Statements, Resolutions and Declarations Relevant to Tobacco Control and Human Rights

UN Statements on Non-Communicable Diseases

Global Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of NCDs

2013 – The NCD GAP includes a human rights based approach to addressing NCDs. There are several references to human rights and the right to health throughout the document. Read it here.

Political declaration of the third high-level meeting of the General Assembly on the prevention and control of NCDs

2018 – The final document of the UN high level meeting on NCD’s contains several references to human rights, including a reference to the right to health in section 3. Read it here.

The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development

The Sustainable Development Goals

2015 – The Sustainable Development goals are based on a human rights framework, with Goal 3 being specifically focused on health. There is a specific tobacco target (target 3.A) that require countries to strengthen implementation of the FCTC. Read them here.

In addition to issuing these statements, resolutions and declarations relevant to tobacco control, the United Nations General Assembly established the Human Rights Council (HRC). The Council is an inter-governmental body within the UN system responsible for strengthening the promotion and protection of human rights around the world, addressing human rights violations and issuing recommendations on human rights situations. As tobacco is a human rights issue, ASH and partners often provide input to the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The head of this office is the High Commissioner for Human Rights, who acts as the secretariat of the Human Rights Council. ASH and partner submissions to the Council as well as written and oral statements to the HRC can be found on The Human Rights Council page. It also contains information on the Universal Periodic Review (UPR).

Open-Ended Intergovernmental Working Group on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Respect to Human Rights (OEIGWG)

During the 26th session (June 2014) of the HRC, the Council adopted resolution 26/9, which established the Open-Ended Intergovernmental Working Group on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Respect to Human Rights (OEIGWG). The OEIGWG regulates the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises, including tobacco corporations. The working group often calls for input from civil society.

Submissions to the OEIGWG

Submission on a new Legally Binding Instrument on Business Activities and Human Rights

2021- ASH and our partners submitted feedback on draft 6 of a new legally binding instrument on business activities and human rights. The submissions were in the form of two matrices (Matrix 1) and (Matrix 2) as well as a cover letter.

Comments Urging the Working Group to Specifically Reference the FCTC

2018 – ASH responded for a call for submissions with comments to the Open Ended Inter-Governmental Working Group on Transnational Corporations and Human Rights urging them to make specific reference to the FCTC in the Treaty and linking tobacco as a human rights issue. Read the submission.