The resolution, proposed by Serbia and the State of Palestine, received backing from co-sponsors such as the European Union, Norway, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, and Thailand and was supported by all States Parties.
In a landmark move, the Conference of the States Parties to the United Nations Convention against Corruption has adopted a resolution aimed at enhancing the protection of whistleblowers worldwide.
Held in Atlanta in December 2023, the Conference was attended by over 3,000 participants from 160 countries, including 2,000 government representatives and 900 civil society organizations.
The gathering, which takes place every two years, aims to assess Convention implementation, enhance international cooperation, and combat corruption. The resolution, proposed by Serbia and the State of Palestine, received backing from co-sponsors such as the European Union, Norway, Russian Federation, Saudi Arabia, and Thailand, and was supported by all States Parties.
Held in Atlanta in December 2023, the Conference was attended by
The resolution was hailed as a significant step in the global fight against corruption, underscorinng the critical role that whistleblowers play in exposing corruption and promoting accountability.
The resolution highlights the growing recognition of the serious challenges posed by corruption to the stability and security of societies, as well as its detrimental impact on democracy, ethical values, justice, and sustainable development. It reaffirms the commitment of States parties to the UN Convention against Corruption as the most comprehensive instrument for combating corruption and emphasizes the need for its full and effective implementation.
Central to the resolution is the importance of reporting in preventing and combating corruption. It underscores the crucial role of whistleblowers in enabling authorities to detect, investigate, and prosecute cases of corruption effectively. The resolution calls upon States parties to establish and strengthen confidential complaint systems and protected reporting mechanisms that facilitate the timely reporting of corruption while ensuring the confidentiality and protection of reporting persons' identities and personal information.
Moreover, the resolution emphasizes the need for robust legal frameworks to protect whistleblowers from unjustified treatment, including workplace retaliation and other forms of harm. It encourages States parties to provide legal advice and support to individuals considering reporting corruption and to establish measures to deter unjustified treatment against whistleblowers.
The resolution also calls for enhanced cooperation between relevant authorities, public and private employers, and other stakeholders to ensure the effective protection of whistleblowers. It further emphasizes the importance of raising public awareness of reporting channels and promoting a safe and enabling environment for those who expose corruption.
In light of the adoption of the resolution, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is tasked with providing technical assistance and capacity-building support to States parties to strengthen their capacity to protect whistleblowers.
The resolution represents a significant milestone in the global fight against corruption and underscores the international community's commitment to promoting transparency, accountability, and integrity.