Factsheet - 7
General comments

General comments of the HR Committee

The HR Committee will issue General comments clarify the scope and meaning of the rights in the ICCPR. They encompass the Committee’s interpretation of the rights of individuals and obligations of States. The Comments have become increasingly detailed over time, and have become a useful guide to States in preparing their report, and to other stakeholders engaging with the Committee.

General comments are particularly useful since the ICCPR was adopted many years ago. They permit the ICCPR to be adapted to modern circumstances and contemporary challenges.

So far, the Committee has published 37 General comments, the last ones focusing on the right to life and the freedom of peaceful assembly. The Committee regularly adopts new General comments.

Table: list of General comments of the HR Committee

No. Right ICCPR Art Year Reference
37 Right to peaceful assembly Article 21 2020 CCPR/C/GC/37
36 Right to Life (Replaces General comments 6 and 14) Article 6 2018 CCPR/C/GC/36
35 Right to Liberty and Security of Persons (Replaces General comment 8) Article 9 2014 CCPR/C/GC/35
34 Freedoms of Opinion and Expression (Replaces General comment 10) Article 19 2011 CCPR/C/GC/34
33 Obligations of States parties under the Optional Protocol - 2008 CCPR/C/GC/33
32 Right to equality before courts and tribunals and to a fair trial (Replaces General comment 13) Article 14 2007 CCPR/C/GC/32
31 The nature of the general legal obligation imposed on States parties (Replaces General comment 3) - 2004 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.13
30 Reporting obligations of States parties under Article 40 (Replaces General comment 1) Article 40 2002 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.12
29 Derogations during a State of Emergency (Replaces General comment 5) Article 4 2001 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.11
28 The Equality of Rights between Men and Women (Replaces General comment 4) Article 3 2000 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.10
27 Freedom of Movement Article 12 1999 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.9
26 Continuity of Obligations - 1997 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.8
25 Participation in Public Affairs and the Right to Vote Article 25 1996 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.7
24 Reservations to the Covenant or the Optional Protocols or Declarations under Article 41 of the Covenant Article 41 1994 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.6
23 Rights of Minorities Article 27 1996 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.5
22 Freedom of Thought, Conscience or Religion Article 18 1993 CCPR/C/21/Rev.1/Add.4
21 Humane Treatment of Persons Deprived of their Liberty (Replaces General comment 9) Article 10 1992 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.202
20 Prohibition of Torture or Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (Replaces General comment 7) Article 7 1992 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.200
19 The Family Article 23 1990 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.198
18 Non-Discrimination Article 2.1 & 26 1989 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.195
17 Rights of the Child Article 24 1989 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.193
16 Right to Privacy Article 17 1988 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.191
15 The Position of Aliens under the Covenant - 1986 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.189
14 Right to Life Article 6 1984 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.188
13 Administration of Justice (Replaced by General comment 32) Article 14 1984 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.184
12 Right to Self-Determination Article 1 1984 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.183
11 Prohibition of Propaganda for War and Inciting National, Racial, or Religious Hatred Article 20 1983 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.182
10 Freedom of Opinion Article 19 1983 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.181
9 Humane Treatment of Persons Deprived of their Liberty (Replaced by General comment 21) Article 10 1982 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.180
8 Right to Life (Replaces General comments 6 and 14) Article 9 1982 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.179
7 Right to Liberty and Security of Persons (Replaces General comment 8) Article 7 1982 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.178
6 Freedoms of Opinion and Expression (Replaces General comment 10) Article 6 1982 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.176
5 Obligations of States parties under the Optional Protocol Article 4 1981 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.176
4 Right to equality before courts and tribunals and to a fair trial (Replaces General comment 13) Article 3 1981 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.175
3 The nature of the general legal obligation imposed on States parties (Replaces General comment 3) Article 2 1981 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.174
2 Reporting obligations of States parties under Article 40 (Replaces General comment 1) Article 40 1981 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.173
1 Derogations during a State of Emergency (Replaces General comment 5) Article 40 1981 HRI/GEN/1/Rev.9 (Vol. I) p.173