Cultural Rights, and of the special procedures, in particular those described in the report of the
Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard
of physical and mental health (A/61/338),
Recognizing that the Council has a constructive role to play in raising awareness of the
human rights aspects of the unacceptably high global rate of maternal mortality and morbidity
and in supporting, promoting and enhancing existing national and international efforts to reduce
this rate,
Welcoming its initiative to hold an interactive dialogue at its eighth regular session on
maternal mortality and the human rights of women, on 5 June 2008,
Recognizing that preventable maternal mortality and morbidity affects women and their
families in all regions and cultures, and that it is exacerbated by factors such as poverty, gender
inequality, age and multiple forms of discrimination, as well as factors such as lack of access to
adequate health facilities and technology, and lack of infrastructure,
1.
Expresses grave concern at the unacceptably high global rate of preventable maternal
mortality and morbidity, noting in this regard that the World Health Organization has assessed
that over 1,500 women and girls die every day as a result of preventable complications occurring
before, during and after pregnancy and childbirth, and that, globally, maternal mortality is the
leading cause of death among women and of girls of reproductive age;
2.
Recognizes that most instances of maternal mortality and morbidity are preventable,
and that preventable maternal mortality and morbidity is a health, development and human rights
challenge that also requires the effective promotion and protection of the human rights of women
and girls, in particular their rights to life, to be equal in dignity, to education, to be free to seek,
receive and impart information, to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress, to freedom from
discrimination, and to enjoy the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health,
including sexual and reproductive health;
3.
Requests all States to renew their political commitment to eliminating preventable
maternal mortality and morbidity at the local, national, regional and international levels, and to
redouble their efforts to ensure the full and effective implementation of their human rights
obligations, the Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, the Programme of Action of the
International Conference on Population and Development and their review conferences, and the
Millennium Declaration and the Millennium Development Goals, in particular the Goals on
improving maternal health and promoting gender equality and empowering women,2 including
through the allocation of necessary domestic resources to health systems;
4.
Also requests States to give renewed emphasis to maternal mortality and morbidity
initiatives in their development partnerships and cooperation arrangements, including by
honouring existing commitments and considering new commitments, and the exchange of
effective practices and technical assistance to strengthen national capacities, as well as to
integrate a human rights perspective into such initiatives, addressing the impact that
discrimination against women has on maternal mortality and morbidity;
2

2

Millennium Development Goals 5 and 3.

Select target paragraph3