Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Scorned UN rights body seeks identity

I have two words for this organization: Major Fiasco! The energy is not only focused at the wrong place but countries like Cuba and China, sitting on this council, keep getting away with murder. The world is upside down!

AngolaPress - Angola: GENEVA 03/12- The United Nations` top human rights body, scorned by the U.S. administration and shunned by the only two countries it has sought to scrutinize, is still trying to set the rules for combatting atrocities a year after its creation by the General Assembly.

The 47-nation Human Rights Council, which begins its first three-week session of the year on Monday, has already been widely criticized for its first-year failures over Israel and Sudan and finds itself in a power struggle. Member countries including China, Russia and Cuba object to being examined, while outnumbered Western nations are trying to hold everyone accountable to the highest standards.

"It hasn`t gotten off to a good start, there`s no doubt about that," said Peter Splinter of Amnesty International.

The idea behind the council was to replace the highly politicized Human Rights Commission with a new body that could keep some of the worst offenders out of its membership as it extended its work from an annual six-week session to multiple meetings year round.

There is a June deadline for rule setting, but it is still undecided whether the council will continue to produce reports about individual offending countries as the commission was able to do - much to the anger of some of the offenders. China was so indignant about being singled out that it yearly persuaded a majority of commission members to pass a "no action" motion whenever the West proposed a resolution condemning its abuses.

But the council has continued one commission tradition: putting much more emphasis on Israel than any other country. A recent report from one of its experts compared Israeli policies in Palestinian territories to apartheid in South Africa.

OLYMPIC WATCH: Human Rights in China and Beijing 2008

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