A/HRC/53/25 United Nations General Assembly Distr.: General 19 April 2023 Original: English Human Rights Council Fifty-third session 19 June–14 July 2023 Agenda item 3 Promotion and protection of all human rights, civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights, including the right to development Sustainable development and freedom of expression: why voice matters Report of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, Irene Khan Summary In the present report, the Special Rapporteur explores the linkages between the right to freedom of expression, including the right to information, and sustainable development. She introduces a paradigm shift in looking at sustainable development through the lens of freedom of expression. While recognizing important progress made in normative standards for access to information, the Special Rapporteur highlights that more is needed to ensure that the voices of those most disadvantaged in society are heard. She argues that only when both access to information and the effective participation of youth, Indigenous communities, the media, human rights defenders, civil society actors and others are fulfilled will the promise to leave no one behind be realized. As world leaders prepare to gather at the United Nations Headquarters in September 2023 to review progress on meeting the Sustainable Development Goals, the Special Rapporteur calls for renewed political commitment to uphold freedom of expression, an enabler of sustainable development. GE.23-06239 (E) 180423 190423

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