The United States on Found a spot again on Thursday on the United Nations Human Rights Council, die the Trump administration abandoned in 2018 because of what it was called body hypocrisy and anti-Israel prejudice.
In striving to rejoin the 47-member council, the Biden administration, die a far more supportive attitude to the United Nations than its predecessor, argued that American interests would be better served if the United States were a member pursuing change from within.
The United States won a three-year term for one of 18 free places on the council, to start in January, in An vote by the 193-member General Assembly.
Based in Geneva, the council is considered the world’s most important human rights body. While it’s no criminal enforcement of sanctioning powers, the municipality can initiate investigations die: help shape the global image of countries. It’s possible also influence on their behavior if they are deemed to have bad rights.
But the municipality has a wide range of critics who claim that many of to be elected members are human rights abusers themselves, pointing to examples like China, Russia, Cuba and Venezuela. the presence of such an countries on the Council, critics saying, undermines legitimacy of to be work.
A lot of also object to a permanent item on the council’s agenda on violations of rights in the Palestinian territories, die have become the basis for are numerous resolutions condemning Israel.
The Biden Administration success on his return in the council can now lead to a test of it is stated goal of strengthening America’s advocacy for human rights around the world. A lot of conservative Republicans Oppose Return, And There Is No guarantee that the United States will not withdraw from the council again, should a Republican win the White House back in 2024.
“The Council provides a forum where we can have open discussions over ways we and our partners can improve”, secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, who announced the intention to rejoin the council in February, said Thursday after the elections results.
“At the same time, it is also suffers from serious disabilities, including disproportionate attention on Israel and the membership of different states with blatant human rights records,” he said. “Together we must push” back against attempts to undermine the ideals upon which the Human Rights Council was founded.”
As for the . to underline challenges quoted by Mr Blinken, several countries with poor of questionable human rights records also won chairs on the Council on Thursday included Cameroon, Eritrea, the United Arab Emirates and Honduras.
With its return to the Human Rights Council, the Biden administration further returned to moves in towards American isolationism.
President Biden has revived the US membership in the World Health Organization, rejoined the Paris climate agreement and restored funding to UN agencies die were economized. Those agencies include the United Nations Population Fund, a leading supplier of maternal health and family planning services, and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, die Palestinians helps die are classified as refugees.
Despite the renewed involvement of the US, diplomats and rights groups in Geneva did not foresee an easy return to the species of influence exercised by the United States in the Human Rights Council during President Barack Obama’s term.
The United States is facing met An more assertive China that pushes back aggressive with criticism of his repression in the Xinjiang region and economically vulnerable under pressure countries go inside supporting initiatives die divert attention from civil and political rights.
The United States, on the other hand, is short of diplomatic staff in Geneva to promote its human rights agenda. President Biden’s Elected Ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva still waiting for congress confirmation, and he has yet to nominate an ambassador to the Human Rights Council.
Under the mood system for open seats in the Human Rights Council, slates of candidates are divided in five geographic regions, and each member of the General Assembly is coming in eligible for: run except for die completing two consecutive terms on the Council. Voting is done secret mood. a simple majority of 97 votes is necessary to win. In cases where the number of candidates exceeds the number of open seats, the largest votegetter wins.
This year but the number of candidates of each region equal to the number of Which region’s open seats, which means no of the seats were contested. Rights groups outside the United Nations called that part of the problem.
“The absence of competition in this yearHuman Rights Council vote makes a mockery of the word ‘election'” Louis Charbonneau, the UN director at Human Rights Watch, said: in a statement ahead of the vote. “Choosing Serious Violators of Rights like Cameroon, Eritrea and the UAE send a terrible signal that UN member states do not take the council’s fundamentals seriously mission protect human rights.”
The other new elected of re-elected members included Gambia, Benin and Somalia from the African group; Qatar, Kazakhstan, India and Malaysia from the Asian group; Argentina and Paraguay from Latin America and the Caribbean group; Luxembourg and Finland from the west group; and Lithuania and Montenegro from Eastern Europe group.
Nick Cumming-Bruce contributed from Geneva and Lara Jakes from Washington.
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