The Human Rights Council at GrunnMUN 2019

The Ethics of Euthanasia

Euthanasia is a topic that is highly contentious by definition. It is “the intentional killing, by act or omission, of a dependent human being for his or her alleged benefit.” As of June 2015, human euthanasia is legal in the Netherlands, Belgium, Colombia, and Luxembourg. In September 2002, Belgium considered euthanasia to be a human right, highlighting its importance with regard to non-terminal patients, which was revolutionary, to say the least. Other countries such as New Zealand have made efforts in order to legalize the practice; however, after two attempts, a verdict still has not been reached. Hence, by analyzing the conflicting opinions nations hold on euthanasia, the global community is faced with an unresolved dilemma: should the ‘right to die’ be given a fundamental status?

At the outset, we expect delegates to analyze the agenda from a policy and ethical standpoint, which can include an economic stakeholder analysis. Delegates will also be required to explore various national laws on euthanasia in jurisdictions which monitor the practice. Delegates are also to be expected to face the moral reasoning that would affect certain country’s position. The delegates are also given a chance to go beyond the scope of normal Human rights council. Since the topic has yet to be addressed by the United Nations Human Rights Council, this gives considerable discretion to the delegates to present distinct viewpoint.

Council Information

The Human Rights Council with its office in Geneva as it is today is one of the younger committees of the UN: it was created on March 15, 2006 to replace the United Nations Commission on Human Rights. Its 47 United Nations Member States are elected by the UN General Assembly. It is an inter-governmental body within the United Nations responsible for strengthening the promotion and protection of Human Rights all over the world and for addressing Human Rights violations all over the world. It has the ability to discuss all issues related to Human Rights and situations that require its attention, resulting in resolutions submitted to other UN bodies such as, but not limited to, the General Assembly and the Security Council.

The Chairs

Mehreen Siffat

Hello delegates! I’ll be chairing this year’s United Nations Human Right’s Council and I, for one, am excited to witness a hopefully heated albeit relevant debate during this year’s one day MUN conference. As far as my introduction is concerned, I am from Pakistan and currently in my second year, pursuing LLB in International and European Law at RuG. Therefore, I will give precedence to delegates providing legal arguments(where necessary) every now and then, but of course not overdoing it in the process. Your aim should, nevertheless, be to come up with practical solutions to the topic that will be presented, and to focus most on emerging as a diplomatic leader while keeping the UNHRC mandate in mind; arguments based on moral grounds will always be welcomed. Looking forward to seeing you all! Happy researching!

Alice Nesselrode

Alice is a 24 year old European Studies student from Maastricht in her final year. As her studies already suggest, she is very interested in politics and international relations, and enjoyed attending MUN’s in her free time. Most experience she gained was as part of press teams, although at TEIMUN 2018 she learned a lot by being part of the crisis team. Next to uni, she loves travelling, sushi and can often be found in the local Irish Pub cheering her favourite football team, Schalke 04.

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