The human rights commission exists to promote and protect human rights, and regional co-operation on human rights, in the member states (Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, Indonesia, Lao PDR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Viet Nam). The AICHR is directed by a body of Representatives, one per member state, each nominated by and answerable to their government and serving a three-year term, renewable once. Although the Commission was described as "toothless" by commentators including the Wall Street Journal, NGOs in the region presented cases of alleged violations to it at its inaugural meeting in Jakarta.
The Cairo Declaration on Human Rights in Islam (CDHRI) is a declaration of the member states of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference adopted in Cairo in 1990, which provides an overview on the Islamic perspective on human rights, and affirms Islamic Shari'ah as its sole source. CDHRI declares its purpose to be "general guidance for Member States [of the OIC] in the Field of human rights". This declaration is usually seen as an Islamic response to the post-World War II United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) of 1948.