U.S. Policy Regarding Human Rights Bodies
Office of the Spokesman
November 30, 2004
Question Taken at November 30, 2004 Daily Press Briefing
U.S. Policy Regarding UN Human Rights Bodies
Question: Is there any effect on U.S. policy toward working with the UN Third Committee as a result of the no-action motions taken in regard to resolutions on Zimbabwe and Sudan?
Answer: The United States will continue to engage with member states in the relevant UN bodies, both the General Assembly's Third Committee and the Commission on Human Rights, in promoting and protecting human rights.
We are deeply disappointed that the UN General Assembly passed no-action motions that blocked any consideration on the substance of EU resolutions, cosponsored by the United States, on the situation of human rights in Sudan and Zimbabwe. This follows another no-action motion on a resolution on Belarus. We urged other UN member states to take a strong, unified stand against human rights abuses in these countries. The failure to do so turns a blind eye to the suffering of people in the concerned countries and undercuts the UN's own authority. It also underscores the need for UN member states to consider ways to make these bodies function more effectively and consistent with their founding mandates. We are committed to working with other like-minded states toward this end.
Released on November 30, 2004