Posts

Human Rights, UN Wrongs

Hillel Neuer, executive director of U.N. Watch, gave a short but blistering speech to the United Nations Human Rights Council recently: Faced with compelling reports from around the world of torture, persecution, and violence against women, what has the Council … Read More

By / March 30, 2007

Hillel Neuer, executive director of U.N. Watch, gave a short but blistering speech to the United Nations Human Rights Council recently:

Faced with compelling reports from around the world of torture, persecution, and violence against women, what has the Council pronounced, and what has it decided?

Nothing. Its response has been silence. Its response has been indifference. Its response has been criminal.

One might say, in Harry Truman's words, that this has become a Do-Nothing, Good-for-Nothing Council.

But that would be inaccurate. This Council has, after all, done something.

It has enacted one resolution after another condemning one single state: Israel. In eight pronouncements — and there will be three more this session — Hamas and Hezbollah have been granted impunity. The entire rest of the world — millions upon millions of victims, in 191 countries — continue to go ignored.

[...]Let us consider the past few months. More than 130 Palestinians were killed by Palestinian forces. This is three times the combined total that were the pretext for calling special sessions in July and November. Yet the champions of Palestinian rights — Ahmadinejad, Assad, Khaddafi, John Dugard — they say nothing…Why has this Council chosen silence?

Because Israel could not be blamed. Because, in truth, the dictators who run this Council couldn't care less about Palestinians, or about any human rights.

Needless to say the speech, which you can read in full here or watch here, did not go down well. Council President Luis Alfonso de Alba refused to "express thanks" for the statement, ruled the remarks inadmissible to the official record and banned further statements "in similar tones."

His response has been taken to task on the editorial pages of the Wall Street Journal and the New York Sun today.

"When it comes to actual human rights, the United Nations Human Rights Council reflexively discharges obfuscation, like a squid and its ink," says the Journal. While the Sun points out that Mr de Alba has previously thanked a Zimbabwean speaker for denying human rights abuses under President Mugabe and a Sudanese delegation for saying reports of violence against women in Darfur were exaggerated.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. But it seems that as far as human rights go, they end when you criticize the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Tagged with: