UN: 14 elected to UN human rights commission

UN News Centre
May 5 2004

14 elected to UN human rights commission

4 May 2004 – The United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC)
elected 14 countries today to serve on the Commission on Human
Rights, the UN’s highest forum for examining civil rights around the

Winning by acclamation were Guinea, Kenya, Sudan and Togo from the
African Group; Armenia and Romania from the Eastern European States;
and Ecuador and Mexico from the Latin American and Caribbean States.

The others were elected by secret ballot. Of the four candidates
nominated by the Asian Group to fill three vacancies, Malaysia,
Pakistan and the Republic of Korea were elected; Viet Nam lost its
bid for a seat. Canada, Finland and France, nominees from the Western
European and Others Group, where chosen while Spain was not.

After the African Group submitted Sudan for re-election to another
two-year term, the representative of the United States traded harsh
words with the Sudanese representative and the US delegation excused
itself and walked out.

US representative Sichan Siv said he was perplexed and dismayed that
the African Group had submitted, for the third time, the candidacy of
a country that massacred its own citizens in the western Darfur
region, where the humanitarian crisis had reached a tragic scale.

He urged the Group to consider the effect of that situation on the
Commission’s reputation and ability to function effectively as the
world’s protector of human rights and freedoms.

Sudanese representative Omar Bashir Mohamed Manis said his Government
had acknowledged fully the humanitarian problem in Darfur and had
asked the international community for help.

He said it was ironic that the US delegation, while shedding
crocodile tears over the situation in Darfur, was turning a blind eye
to the atrocities committed by US forces using the most lethal
weapons known to man against the civilian population in Iraq.

The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) has
begun collecting information for a report on civil liberties in Iraq
and has said it hopes to complete it by the end of this month.

Similarly, a high-level UN fact-finding mission returned to Geneva
from Darfur last week and has been finalizing its report, according
to OHCHR. Senior UN humanitarian officials, meanwhile, have expressed
shock at the lack of protection provided to civilians in the
strife-torn region.

ECOSOC, to which the Commission on Human Rights reports, also held
elections to such panels as the Commission on Population and
Development, the Commission for Social Development and the Commission
on Sustainable Development.

From: Emil Lazarian | Ararat NewsPress

Emil Lazarian

“I should like to see any power of the world destroy this race, this small tribe of unimportant people, whose wars have all been fought and lost, whose structures have crumbled, literature is unread, music is unheard, and prayers are no more answered. Go ahead, destroy Armenia . See if you can do it. Send them into the desert without bread or water. Burn their homes and churches. Then see if they will not laugh, sing and pray again. For when two of them meet anywhere in the world, see if they will not create a New Armenia.” - WS