Skip to main content
© UN Photo/Violaine Martin

Treaty bodies

What are the treaty bodies?

The human rights treaty bodies are committees of independent experts that monitor implementation of the core international human rights treaties. Each State party to a treaty has an obligation to take steps to ensure that everyone in the State can enjoy the rights set out in the treaty.

Currently, there are nine human rights international treaties, and one optional protocol, from which 10 treaty bodies have been established. The treaty bodies are composed of independent experts of recognized competence in human rights, who are nominated and elected for fixed renewable terms of four years by State parties.

Which treaties do they monitor?

Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

The Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) monitors implementation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (4 January 1969).

Learn more

Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

The Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) monitors implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (3 January 1976).

Learn more

Human Rights Committee

The Human Rights Committee (CCPR) monitors implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (23 March 1976) and its optional protocols.

Learn more

Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women

The Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) monitors implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (1979) and its optional protocol (3 September 1981).

Learn more

Committee against Torture

The Committee against Torture (CAT) monitors implementation of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment (26 June 1987).

Learn more

Committee on the Rights of the Child

The Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) monitors implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (2 September 1990) and its optional protocols (12 February 2002).

Learn more

Committee on Migrant Workers

The Committee on Migrant Workers (CMW) monitors implementation of the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families (1 July 2003).

Learn more

Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment

The Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (SPT) established pursuant to the Optional Protocol of the Convention against Torture (OPCAT) (22 June 2006) visits places of detention in order to prevent torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

Learn more

Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

The Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) monitors implementation of the International Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (3 May 2008).

Learn more

Committee on Enforced Disappearances

The Committee on Enforced Disappearances (CED) monitors implementation of the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance (23 December 2010).

Learn more

The treaty bodies meet in Geneva, Switzerland. All the treaty bodies receive support from the Human Rights Treaties Division of OHCHR in Geneva.

More about treaty bodies