IFI governance

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UN experts call for World Bank safeguards with human rights

26 June 2013

In mid April four independent advisers to the UN urged that: “All activities supported by the World Bank, not only its investment lending, should be included in the [safeguards] review to ensure consistency with international human rights standards”, to “improve development outcomes and strengthen the protection of the world’s poorest from unintended adverse impacts of activities financed by the Bank”. Cephas Lumina, UN special rapporteur on foreign debt and human rights, said: “We should not forget that states must also adhere to their international law obligations when they act through international organisations. The World Bank is no exception.” The first consultation phase on the Bank’s safeguards policies (see Update 85, 83, 82) concluded end April. The findings of phase one will be presented to the Bank board on 23 July. The second phase, which began in May, is expected to run until November, and includes further consultations and the preparation of a first draft of the integrated framework.