The sanction is mainly symbolic, but no less important: Russia could be suspended from the Council of human rights from ONU. The organization’s General Assembly will meet “Thursday at 10 a.m. local time” in New York, confirms spokeswoman Paulina Kubiak, to vote on this request from Westerners. “Russia should not occupy a position of authority in this body, nor should we allow Russia to use its role in the Council as a propaganda tool to suggest that it has a legitimate concern for human rights,” the US ambassador to the United States said. UNLinda Thomas Greenfield.
“In fact, every day (…) we see heartbreaking reports of their lack of interest in human rights. The participation of the Russia at the Human Rights Council is a farce. This damages the credibility of the Council and the United Nations as a whole,” she added. “That’s why we think it’s time for the United Nations General Assembly to suspend them,” the US diplomat said.
United States and United Kingdom confident
In order to remove Russia from the Human Rights Council, which sits in Geneva, a majority of 2/3 of the countries is needed in the vote to which the 193 members of the General Assembly have been invited. Abstentions are not taken into account. The United States, like the United Kingdom, which supported the American approach, are confident of achieving this majority. Other member states, European but also African, are less sure of this, confided several diplomats.
The UN secretariat, for its part, expressed its unwillingness to such a suspension, fearing that it would open the door to any country’s request for suspension in a UN body by any country. The Human Rights Council is the main forum of the United Nations responsible for promoting this area. It was established in 2006 and consists of 47 member states, elected by the General Assembly.
Members of Russia and Ukraine currently
In addition to promoting human rights, its mission is to regularly assess their situation in UN member states. The Council may also address any question or situation relating to human rights that so requires, including during extraordinary meetings that may be convened as a matter of urgency. This was especially the case recently for the situation in Ukraine or Ethiopia.
Russia has been an occasional member since 2006. A state can only serve two terms in a row and then has to wait at least a year before it can claim another seat. Unfortunately, the current situation is ironic: both theUkraine that Russia is currently a member of the Council and that Russia’s term of office ends in 2023.
In the history of the United Nations Libya of Muammar Gaddafi was suspended from the Human Rights Council in 2011 by acclamation of the United Nations General Assembly. Unlike Russia, it was not a permanent member of the Security Council and Tripoli was not a non-permanent member.