2014 20/11

During its 112th session United Nations Human Rights Committee adopted new general comment number 35 on Art. 9 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights: the right to liberty and security of person.

Remarks making process began with a discussion at the 106th session of the Committee in October 2012 and lasted for 2 years. The first draft of a general comment was presented to the Committee by Gerald L. Neuman during the 107th session at which the Committee began the first reading. It was completed at the 110th session. After that the draft of the general comment was published in order to the state and non-governmental organizations could submit their written comments. The second reading of the draft began during the 111th session of the Committee in July 2014. It was finally adopted at the 112th session in October this year

You can find the document on the site of the UN’s by link http://tbinternet.ohchr.org/_layouts/treatybodyexternal/SessionDetails1.aspx?SessionID=811&Lang=en or click the image below:

CCPR - International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 112 Session (07 Oct 2014 - 31 Oct 2014)

This general comment substitutes a similar document of 1982, which consisted of 4 point on one page. In contrast, the new comment consists of 68 points on 19 pages. These comments include sections:

  • The general situation.
  • Arbitrary arrests and illegal detention.
  • Explaining of reasons for the arrest and of any criminal charges.
  • Court control of detention connected with a criminal charge.
  • ┬áThe right to investigation of the case for release from unlawful or arbitrary detention.
  • The right to compensation for unlawful arbitrary arrest or detention.
  • ┬áConnection of Art. 9 with other articles of the Covenant.

According to human rights defender Raman Kisliak, in the comments there are references to 5 Belarusian cases considered on individual communications: Levinov v. Belarus 1812/2008, Marinich v. Belarus 1502/2006, Gavrilin v. Belarus 1342/2005, Smantser v. Belarus 1178/2003, Kovsh v. Belarus 1787/2008.

In the latter case, the Committee for the first time during the consideration of individual communications noted that the period of 48 hours is too long for delivering a man against whom a charge brought to the judge in order that he (judge) decided about his (man) preventive measures: keep in custody or released on bail. This norm has long been included in the legislation of our neighboring countries: Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, Russia, due to the fact that they are the members of the Council of Europe. But now, this rule also applies to other countries – participants of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, says human rights defender Raman Kisliak.

General comments – is essentially generalization of the practice. Their creation is one of the competences of the Committee, in addition to the consideration of periodic reports of the states and individual communications.


CCPR/C/GC/35 – General Comment No.35 – Article 9: Liberty and Security of person (Advance Unedited Version) (PDF, en.)

Prepared by Ales LETA,
Belarusian Legal Portal.

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