CYIL vol. 12 (2021)

CYIL 12 (2021) States ’ reports under UN hr treaties: how to read overdue reports? This article returns to a basic idea mentioned above – self-reporting represents a tool available universally and generally for monitoring and controlling state behavior in the light of human rights conventions – a method of compliance. It uses updated and detailed data provided by the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The OHCHR maintains support in the state reporting agenda for treaty bodies and publishes a comprehensive overview of all state reports submitted on time or with a delay to all treaty bodies. It also records all overdue reports in two lists – one is the list of “owing” states, second is the list of “creditors “– treaty bodies who are expecting and should obtain the state reports. This article focuses on the “creditors “or “addressees” side. Based on the data from the OHCHR website, the text aims to explain why the late reporting touches nine treaty bodies in a different way and with a different intensity. Why are states owing 18 reports to the CCPR and 79 reports to the CESCR? Why do 178 CCPR State Parties owe 18 reports, the same number as 56 CMW State Parties? How to understand the fact that the number of awaited reports about the CRC, CRC-OP-SC, and the CRPD, is almost the same (54, 56, 55), although these conventions cover different human rights topics and entered into force in different years (1990, 2002, 2008), which means that the obligation to submit a report last more or less time? In general, can we identify a relation between the number of delayed reports and the number of State Parties or the “age” of the Convention? Can we say that State Parties are more willing to report on “new” treaties? Can we say that they seem to become tired of reporting on an “old” Convention after several cycles, or do they report inertially? Is there any link between the “popularity” of a particular Convention (represented by a number of State Parties and the speed of entry into force) and the number of expected reports? The text structure is as follows: the first part briefly introduces the legal basis and procedure of reporting to treaty bodies. The second part is devoted to late reporting as a phenomenon, it also briefly presents the background and the possible explanations of delays. The third part compares different approaches of states to particular reporting obligations, and it researches possible links between the number of delayed reports related to eleven treaties and treaties’ essential characteristics (that can be expressed quantitatively, i.e., number of State Parties, the date of adoption of a Convention, the date of the entry into force of a Convention, the time between the adoption and the entry into force). 1. Reporting on human rights In general, reporting systems contained in international treaties serve as a tool for obtaining information about the compliance of parties with their obligations under a treaty. They help the international community and the reporting state itself to assess the progress made within the scope of a treaty. States’ regular self-reporting forms a part of several international legal regimes, it is not an exclusive feature of human rights treaties. Reporting has its origins at the beginning of the 20th century, in 1919 when the Covenant of the League of Nations and the International Labour Organization (ILO) Constitutions were adopted. The League of Nations Covenant (Article 22) obliged mandatories to report annually on each mandate territory, and a unique permanent commission was set up to receive and examine these reports. The ILO Constitution in Article 22 contains an obligation


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