US quits Human Rights Council?
As human right is not my beat - I'm more a casual observer - there isno context for me to use in interpreting what the hell this means. Butwhatever it means it doesn't sound good.
Those of you who are smarter at this should feel free to comment yourbuns off on this one. I for one would welcome the insight.
To be frank, the current Administration in America has been really goodat no giving a crap at whatever anyone else thinks and this strikes meas one of its last acts of "up yours" defiance before it hands over thereigns of power to the next crew.
Carole Vann/Juan Gasparini/Human Rights Tribune - The news that the US has completely withdrawn from the Human Rights Council spread like wildfire Friday afternoon (June 6) through the corridors of the Palais des Nations in Geneva. There was general consternation amongst diplomats and NGOS. Reached by phone, the American mission in Geneva neither confirmed nor denied the report. Although unofficial, the news comes at a time of long opposition by the Bush administration to the reforms which created the Human Rights Council in June 2006. Washington announced from the beginning that the US would not be an active member but its observer status would mean that it could intervene during the sessions. To date even this has rarely happened.
“We don’t understand the reasons nor the timing of the decision”, said Sebastien Gillioz of Human Rights Watch. “There have even been some positive signs during this Council. For example Belarus was not re-elected as a member in 2007 nor Sri Lanka this year”.
But Eric Sottas, director of the International Organisation againstTorture sees it as a a political gesture. “The US has always clearlyshown its opposition to the Council. This is a slightly more public wayof putting pressure on it in order to raise the stakes. What is morethe Bush dynasty is coming to the end of its mandate,” he said. “Itreminds me of the time when the Nixon administration, which backedPinochet in Chile, chastized the UN for criticising the Chileandictator. But when Carter was elected in 1977, the American governmenttook the floor at the Human Rights Commission to ask forgiveness. Aftera presidency like that of Bush, you can expect some important changesin US policy on human right.”