Acting in accordance with the responsibility placed upon it by the Charter of the United Nations, the Economic and Social Council created the Commission on Human Rights on 16 February 1946. The work of the Commission was to be directed towards submitting proposals, recommendations and reports regarding any matter of concerning human rights. The Commission initially consisted of nine members appointed in their individual capacity. Among these were Eleanor Roosevelt, who was elected Chairman, RenÃ© Cassin, Vice-chairman, and K.C. Neogy of India, Rapporteur.
In 1966, ECOSOC invited the Commission to consider as a matter of importance and urgency the question of the violation of human rights and fundamental freedoms and to submit to the Council its recommendations on measures to halt these violations. The terms of reference of the Commission were thus widened by ECOSOC resolutions 1235 and 1503, which authorized the Commission to take action, under certain conditions, concerning information relevant to gross violations of human rights, contained in communications listed pursuant to ECOSOC resolution 728 F.
The Commission currently has 54 Member States, with membership distributed among the various political and geographic blocs. The Commission's work consists of standard-setting, promotional activities, monitoring and enforcing.
This series consists of records created by the Division of Human Rights relating to the work of the Commission from 1956 to 1969 and covering Sessions 13 through 26.UN NYRegistry
The records of this series address questions related to stateless persons and refugees and victims of war. They include correspondence regarding the international instruments concerned with refugees and stateless or displaced persons, namely the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and the Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.
The records of this sub-series attest to the work of the Secretariat in advocating for victims of war on the one hand and in the drafting of international instruments addressing human rights issues in armed conflict on the other. The work of the Ad Hoc Commission on the Protection of Prisoners of War is well documented in the series, as are questions related to the application of the Geneva Conventions of 1949.
The largest group of files consists of correspondence and documentation with regard to the plight of the survivors of so-called scientific experimentation in the Nazi concentration camps, a continuation of earlier documentation contained in the SOA sub-fonds.