Volker Turk appointed as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Volker Turk appointed as UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Volker Turk: Volker Turk from Austria has recently been appointed as the next UN High Commissioner for Human Rights.

  • Key Highlights:
  • 57 years old Turk will succeed Michelle Bachelet of Chile.
  • The approval for the latest appointment came from the Secretary-General of United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres after the approval by the General Assembly.
  • The new High Commissioner of UN Human Rights is currently coordinating the global policy work as an under-Secretary-General in the UN’s Executive Office.
  • Previously, Turk was the Assistant High Commissioner for the Protection at UN Refugees, UNHCR, in Geneva where he played a key role in the development of the landmark Global Compact on Refugees.
  • Presently he was serving as assistant Secretary General for policy.

About Volker Turk:

  • Volker Turk was born in 1965 in Austria.
  • He is an Austrian lawyer and UN official. His work was published by Duncker and Humblot, Berlin 1992.
  • He has also been awarded the human rights prize of the University of Graz in 2016.

About UNHRC:

  • It refers to the United Nations Human Rights Council.
  • UNHRC is the Human Rights Council is an inter-governmental body within the United Nations system.
  • It is located at the UN Office at Geneva.
  • It was founded on 15 March 2006 by the UN General Assembly Resolution 60/251.
  • It replaced the former United Nations Commission on Human Rights (UNCHR) that had been strongly criticized for allowing countries with poor human rights records to be members.
  • The UNHRC works closely with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR).


  • Its main task is to investigates allegations of breaches of human rights in UN member states. It also addresses important thematic human rights issues such as freedom of expression, women's rights, LGBT rights, and the rights of racial and ethnic minorities.


  • The Council comprises of 47 Member States, which are elected by the UN General Assembly.
  • The Council's Membership is based on equitable geographical distribution.
  • The seats are distributed among regional groups Group of African States (13), Group of Asia-Pacific States (13), Group of Eastern European States (6), Group of Latin American and Caribbean States (8) and Group of Western European and other States (7).
  • The members of the Council serve for a period of three years and are not eligible for immediate re-election after serving two consecutive terms.

Who has recently been appointed as next UN High Commissioner for Human Rights?
A) Volker Turk
B) Zeid Raad Al Hussein
C) Navi Pillay
D) Michelle Bachelet