World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 


U.N. Election Tomorrow: Chavez & Pakistan to Win


MEDIA RELEASE
U.N. Election Tomorrow: Chavez & Pakistan to Win -- But U.S. May Lose -- U.N. Human Rights Council Seats

Rights groups oppose bids by Pakistan, Venezuela,
Kazakhstan, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, and UAE

Questions on candidacies of Kenya and Sierra Leone

For Immediate Release
Contact: media1@unwatch.org


INTERVIEWS: UN Watch director Hillel Neuer is in New York to attend
the UN General Assembly vote tomorrow, which starts at 10 am,
and will be available for interviews.

Marcel Granier, Venezuelan journalist persecuted by Chavez regime, at Nov. 9, 2012 press briefing at U.N. Headquarters.

Eligio Cedeno, Venezuela's most famous political prisoner before 2009 escape to America.

Igor Vinyavsky, Kazakhstan journalist persecuted by Nazarbayev regime

Sajid Christopher, Christian activist for minority rights in Pakistan. Click here for his remarks.


NEW YORK, Nov. 11 -- As the U.N. prepares to name 18 nations tomorrow to its highest human rights body, in an election where the U.S. may lose, human rights groups warned that Pakistan, Venezuela, Kazakhstan, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, and the United Arab Emirates -- all of whose candidacies are uncontested and therefore virtually guaranteed -- are unfit under the U.N.'s own membership criteria, while the qualifications of Kenya and Sierra Leone were "questionable." Click here for full report PDF -- Executive summary below.

The evaluations were published today by two non-governmental organizations, the Geneva-based UN Watch and Human Rights Foundation, after being presented Friday at a U.N. Headquarters briefing before diplomats and reporters from international news agencies.

"Pakistan, Venezuela, Kazakhstan, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, and UAE systematically violate the human rights of their own citizens," said UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer, "and they have consistently voted the wrong way on U.N. initiatives to protect the human rights of others."

UN Watch this year led an international coalition of 40 MPs and NGOs that appealed to U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice, the EU, and world leaders to oppose the bids by Chavez and Pakistan.

- See Pakistan appeal, petiton, testimonies: http://www.unwatch.org/StopPakistan

- See Venezuela appeal, petiton, testimonies: http://www.unwatch.org/StopChavez

"Regrettably," said Neuer, "neither the U.S. nor the EU said a word. By turning a blind eye as human rights violators easily join and subvert the council, leading democracies are complicit in the world body's moral decline."

"We saw the same indifference last week when Sudan, whose leader is wanted for genocide by the International Criminal Court, was elected by 176 votes -- with support from at least 10 EU states -- to ECOSOC, a principal U.N. organ that oversees the accreditation and work of human rights NGOs, and decides the composition of U.N. women's rights bodies."

"Chavez backs the murderous regime of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, and threw a judge in jail after she released a political prisoner in compliance with a U.N. ruling. Pakistan has a Christian mother of five on death row and coddles the extremists who shot a girl in the head for advocating education for women and girls," said Neuer.

"It will be an insult to their victims -- and a defeat for the global cause of human rights -- if the U.N. helps gross abusers act as champions and global judges of human rights."

"When the U.N.'s highest human rights body becomes a case of the foxes guarding the henhouse, the world's victims suffer."

The Friday press briefing by UN Watch and Human Rights Foundation featured genuine and courageous champions of human rights who pleaded against the election of their oppressors: Eligio Cedeno, Venezuela's most famous political prisoner prior to his 2009 escape to America; Marcel Granier, a persecuted journalist from Venezuela; Sajid Christopher, a Christian minority rights activist from Pakistan; and Igor Vinyavsky, a journalist from Kazakhstan who was a political prisoner released from jail earlier this year. (See photos on the right, for higher quality photo album click here.)

########

EVALUATION OF CANDIDATES FOR 2013-2015
MEMBERSHIP ON THE UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL

Click here for full report PDF

Presented at U.N. Headquarters on Nov. 11, 2012

Executive Summary

This report evaluates the countries that have submitted candidacies for the Nov. 12, 2012 election of 18 new members to the UN Human Rights Council. To evaluate qualifications we applied the membership criteria established by UNGA Resolution 60/251, in particular by examining (a) each candidate’s record of domestic human rights protection; and (b) its UN voting record. The report finds as follows:

Not Qualified
Seven candidates have poor records and are not qualified:
Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Gabon, Kazakhstan, Pakistan, UAE, Venezuela

Questionable
Two candidates have problematic records and thus questionable candidacies:
Kenya, Sierra Leone

Qualified
Only 11 out of 20 candidate countries are qualified to be Council members:
Argentina, Brazil, Estonia, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Japan, Montenegro, South Korea, Sweden, United States

The absence of competition this year in four out of the five regional slates is scandalous, undermining the very premise and rationale for holding elections. Nevertheless, this report reminds UN member states that they have the right to refrain from voting for countries deemed Not Qualified, even if those happen to be running on closed slates. Instead, as detailed in the report, during the ballot they can actually defeat such candidacies, and instead free up the process for qualified alternatives to come forward. We note several alternative candidacies for the relevant regional groups, who have better human rights and U.N. voting records:

Qualified Alternative Candidates
Africa:
Cape Verde, Ghana, Namibia, Zambia
Asia: Mongolia, East Timor
Latin America: Panama, Paraguay

In regard to candidate countries deemed Questionable, they should, at a minimum, be asked to commit to redress the shortcomings identified in this report.

Click here for full report PDF


www.unwatch.org

UN Watch is a Geneva-based human rights organization founded in 1993 to monitor UN compliance with the principles of its Charter. It is accredited as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) in Special Consultative Status to the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and as an Associate NGO to the UN Department of Public Information (DPI).

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Palestinian Refugees From Syria Face Worsening Situation

Palestinian women at a UNRWA distribution centre in the Jaramana refugee camp, Damascus, Syria. Photo: UNRWA/Carole Alfarah More>>

ALSO:

Greece Risks Prolonged Social Crisis

Greece’s severe financial crisis has bred social unrest and intolerance of the nearly one million irregular migrants living in the country (October 2012). Photo: IRIN/Kristy Siegfried More>>

Madagascar: Warning Of ‘rapid’ Spread Of Plague In Capital

Ny Hantra Andriatsifasoa survived the bubonic plague after being infected in Madagascar in 2011. Photo: IRIN/Tiana Randriaharimalala More>>

New Bird Flu Strain In Europe Threatens Poultry Sector

24 November 2014 – The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization ( FAO ) today warned that a new bird flu strain detected in Europe poses a significant threat to the poultry sector, especially in low-resourced countries situated along ... More>>

Mexico: Disappearances Reach Record Number This Year

The National Registry of Missing Persons acknowledges that from 2007 to date, there are 23,605 cases of disappeared persons; 40% have been reported during the current administration of President Enrique Peña Nieto. More>>

Ban To Take Up Fight Against Ebola With All UN Organisations

Street sellers at Waterside market in central Monrovia, where there has seen a huge drop in customers over the past months due to the onset of the Ebola Virus Disease. Photo: UNDP/Carly Learson (20 November 2014) More>>

ALSO:

Darfur: UN-Backed Event Promotes Role Of Women In Peace

Darfur: amid mass rape allegations, UN-backed event promotes role of women in peace processes More>>

Ebola Cases No Longer Rising In Guinea And Liberia

In Conakry, Guinea, a mobilizer teaches children about proper handwashing techniques, which help prevent the spread of diseases, including Ebola. Photo: UNICEF/Timothy La Rose More>>

ALSO:


Get More From Scoop

 
 
 
 
 
World
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news