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Asian Tribune is published by World Institute For Asian Studies|Powered by WIAS Vol. 12 No. 2613

UN Rights Council Disappoints Again - Fails to Take Action on Darfur, Sri Lanka and Uzbekistan

Geneva, 06 October, ( :– The UN Human Rights Council adjourned its second regular session today without taking any effective action to address the world’s human rights crises, Human Rights Watch said today. States with poor human rights records dominated the council’s deliberations and countries more committed to human rights failed to exercise effective leadership.

"In the face of atrocities in the Sudan, attacks on civilians in Sri Lanka, and impunity for mass murder in Uzbekistan, this council was largely silent," said Peggy Hicks, global advocacy director of Human Rights Watch. "As the premier international human rights body, the council needs to demonstrate its credibility by taking robust action against violator states."

The council heard detailed reporting from its independent experts on human rights violations in a number of countries during its "interactive dialogue" segment, but was not able to agree on any follow-up to their findings.

The council also adopted only a short procedural decision allowing continuation of its activities, and will meet again in late November to continue its work.

The council postponed consideration of all resolutions presented during this session, including two on Darfur, despite Sudan’s responsibility for ongoing war crimes and its continuing defiance of UN Security Council resolutions when African states and the European Union could not agree on a text. It also failed to act on a proposal by the European Union to address the deteriorating situation in Sri Lanka because of strong opposition from the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) and a number of Asian states.

Four of the independent experts appointed by the council, after a fact-finding mission to Lebanon and Israel, found serious violations of human rights and humanitarian law by Israel and Hezbollah during the recent conflict, in line with findings by Human Rights Watch. The council’s discussion of their report, however, largely ignored these findings. Numerous Arab and Muslim states denounced the report as biased towards Israel, while Israel faulted the report for failing to discuss Lebanon’s role in the crisis. The debate demonstrated the council’s continuing inability to objectively address the responsibilities under international law of all parties to the conflict in Lebanon, Human Rights Watch said.

Despite the Uzbek government’s abusive crackdown following the massacre of hundreds of unarmed protesters in Andijan in May 2005, the council also refused to publicly address the human rights situation in Uzbekistan, deciding instead to continue to examine the situation in private.

- World Socialist Web Site -

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