Thursday, December 11, 2008

Why UN bodies are failing over human rights

THE world marked the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights this week. Media freedom group Reporters San Frontières issued its own report on December 10, giving a poor mark to the Geneva-based Human Rights Council, the main UN body concerned with the issues. Says the RSF:

The UN Human Rights Council is doing little better than its predecessor, the now-abolished Commission on Human Rights, which was completely discredited over
the years, especially when it named a Libyan as its president. The council has the failings of all UN bodies, where member-states are both judges and judged.
States with repressive governments are elected to the council and thus tasked with ensuring respect in other countries for rights they themselves are abusing on a daily basis. Until this absurd situation is ended, the United Nations cannot be said to be fulfilling its goal of protecting human rights.
The use of human rights by countries for their own purposes will not end until the UN Security Council and the whole system of world governance is reformed and enlarged. This issue has been highlighted by the present economic and environmental crisis.
If the UN does not manage to end it, the council will
fail in its mission.

Check out the full RSF report.
Human rights in post-coup Fiji - Why might is not right
Pacific media human rights issues
The Witness take on human rights

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