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US withdraws from the UN Human Rights Council calling the organisation is not “Worthy of its Name”

US withdraws from the UN Human Rights Council calling the organisation is not “Worthy of its Name”
Written by Aman Kumar Singh

United States ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley on Tuesday announced that the US will be leaving the UN Human Rights Council accusing the council of having a disproportionate focus and unending hostility towards Israel and calling the organisation “protector of human rights abusers and a cesspool of political bias”. Ambassador Nikki Haley said US’s withdrawal was not a retreat from the country’s commitment to human rights, but she accused the international council consisting of 47 countries “an organisation that is not worthy of its name”.

“We take this step because our commitment does not allow us to remain a part of a hypocritical and self-serving organisation that makes a mockery of human rights,” she said alongside US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Washington, DC.

“For too long the Human Rights Council has been a protector of human rights abusers, and a cesspool of political bias,” she said in her speech adding the names of China, Cuba, Venezuela and the Democratic Republic of Congo who violate the human rights on a constant basis still being the part of the UN Human Rights Council, she said in her announcement.

Mike Pomeo, the US Secretary of State said that “the council once had noble vision, but today we need to be honest, the Human Rights Council is a poor defender of human rights.”

Moments after her announcement Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, the UN high commissioner for human rights, called the announcement by US President Donald Trump’s administration “disappointing, if not really surprising”. “Given the state of human rights in today’s world, the US should be stepping up, not stepping back,” he added.

The major announcement by the US comes after the council voted last month to probe the killing hundreds of Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip and accused Israel of excessive use of force. UN’s human rights body was formed in 2006, the country was not a member under the Presidency of George W Bush but in 2009, President Barack Obama reversed that decision after taking office.

Days earlier the Trump administration faced widespread criticism for detaining children separating them from their immigrant parents at the US-Mexico border in the Child Separation Policy. And on Monday Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein asked the US to halt this policy. “The thought that any state would seek to deter parents by inflicting such abuse on children is unconscionable,” said the top UN human rights official.

The US leaving the Council will have ripple effects on the other countries as well, main of them are China and Israel. The US is Israel’s biggest defender in the UN organisation and similarly at the rights council, the United States has recently been the most unabashed critic of rights abuses in China. After Trump’s presidency the US has withdrawn itself from the Paris climate accord, has left the U.N. educational and cultural organization and pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal.

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Aman Kumar Singh

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