UN Rights Chief Calls For End Of Israeli Occupation

UN Rights Chief Calls For End Of Israeli Occupation”

She spoke sharply against allowing "the worst human rights abusers" to participate on the council - calling out Venezuela, Cuba, China, Burundi and Saudi Arabia by name - and called for changes in the way members are elected, including scrapping the secret ballot system. "Competition would force a candidate's human rights record to be considered before votes were cast".

She added: "I will outline changes that must be made". "When the world's pre-eminent human rights body is turned into a haven for dictators, the idea of worldwide cooperation in support of human dignity is discredited". She uses the examples of Venezuela, Cuba, and Russian Federation as human rights abusers who have a seat at the table and whom the HRC has not chosen to condemn.

"Valero said the USA 'practices torture against people arbitrarily held within illegal facilities" - an apparent allusion to the waterboarding and Central Intelligence Agency secret prisons used to interrogate terror suspects.

"Being a member of this council is a privilege, and no country who is a human rights violator should be allowed a seat at the table", the USA envoy declared.

But some rights organizations argue if the US does pull out of the council, the situation may only get worse.

"We will never give up the cause of universal human rights", Haley said.

U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley said that she will make the formal decision on whether or not to withdraw after a three-week long meeting in Geneva.

Trump came to power promising to lead the most pro-Israel US government in history, and Haley has been a stout defender of the country since her appointment.

They say it is an important venue to name and shame rights abusers and to hold countries to their own principles, because no country is flawless or fully above reproach.

"It is an anomaly that there is a dedicated agenda item in a way that there isn't for North Korea or Syria or anything else", he said.

Haley is hardly the first to rebuke the council on these points, but her remarks carried a great deal of weight since an American withdrawal from the group-many fear-could cripple rights protections and let abusive members get away with even more. Despite that outrage, Trump has praised Duterte and invited him to the White House.

Washington says the council is stacked with opponents of Israel and boycotted it for three years under President George W.Bush before rejoining under Barack Obama in 2009.

Trump has not nominated anyone to fill that post, and it's far from certain whether he will.

Venezuela has issued a strong retort to the US after its ambassador to the United Nations accused Caracas of ignoring human rights violations.

"Obviously I believe that the capital should be Jerusalem and the embassy should be moved to Jerusalem because if you look at all their government is in Jerusalem", she said.

"In case after case, it has been a forum for politics, hypocrisy and evasion, not the forum for conscience that its founders envisioned", she said at the Graduate Institute in Geneva.

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