The White Paper confirmed that we would continue our long-standing policy of encouraging the Territories to agree to the extension of UN human rights conventions that the UK has ratified, but extend these to the Territories only when they are ready to apply them. Most of the Overseas Territories are small islands or island groups and face resource and capacity constraints which affect their ability to consider or implement treaties.
In the White Paper we set out a commitment to work with all the populated Territories with a view to extending outstanding UN human rights conventions to them by the end of 2013. We pledged to support Territories that face resource and capacity constraints.
A joint DFID and FCO project on human rights included a one-year component to help Territories that had not already done so to seek to have the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) extended to them. The CEDAW component supported Territories in developing plans which included compliance reviews of their laws and administrative practices. We continue to encourage these Territories to take the remaining steps to enable them to have CEDAW extended to them.
Bermuda and the Cayman Islands had hoped to be in a position to request extension in 2012. We are working with the new leadership in both Territories to enable them to request extension of CEDAW in early 2013.