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U.S. quits UN Human Rights Council
21 June 2018, 02:06 | Bernice Figueroa
Bolton: US Withdrawal from UN Human Rights Council Was 'Decades in the Making'
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed the USA move, branding the council "a biased, hostile, anti-Israel organization that has betrayed its mission of protecting human rights".
Israel is the only country recorded as a dedicated agenda item.
The move extends a broader Trump administration pattern of stepping back from global agreements and forums under the president's "America First" policy.
The United States says the council's hypocritical, self righteous about Israel and the West in general, while ignoring the abuses of numerous 47 member countries' which sit on it.
Russian Federation on Wednesday voiced surprise at the United States' decision to withdraw from the UN Human Rights Council, accusing Washington of "gross cynicism" and "disregard" for the world body. "Rather than altering those practices, it is now threatening United States companies, workers and farmers who have done nothing wrong". Haley said that was "a contributing factor" in the U.S. decision to leave the council.
Haley has consistently castigated the Human Rights Council for their "chronic bias against" Israel, an ally to the U.S.
The United Nations is stressing that human rights are "a pillar" of the organization's work and its secretary-general wants all member states to "engage actively" in the Human Rights Council and other parts of the U.N.'s "human rights architecture".
Well that's what happens, 68 resolutions condemning the Jewish state while just 67 against everyone else with Syria copping 20, North Korea nine, Iran six and Sudan three. She added the US will work with non-governmental groups that share USA goals, "but not with ones who undermine them".
"We have lost a member who has been at the forefront of liberty for generations".
Slovenian ambassador Vojislav Suc, who now holds the council's rotating presidency and has been pushing a faltering reform drive, described the Geneva-based chamber as the best place to trigger action on unsafe rights crises. "The only thing worse than a council that does nearly nothing to protect human rights is a council that covers for human-rights abuses-and is therefore an obstacle to progress and an impediment to change".
That means the council will be left without one of its traditional defenders of human rights.
Haley says the organizations wrote a joint letter to members of the Human Rights Council urging them to oppose a US -sponsored resolution to reform it. "Russia, China, Cuba and Egypt all attempted to undermine our reform efforts this past year".
Current members include Burundi, the Philippines and Venezuela - all nations accused of massive abuses against civilians. She said they tried to "block negotiations" and "thwart reform".
Rights groups have criticized the Trump administration for not making human rights a priority in its foreign policy.
"We will continue to strongly advocate for reform of the Human Rights Council".
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