Skip to main content

VÄRLDEN: FN inrättar ett nytt råd för mänskliga rättigheter

Pressmeddelande   •   Mar 16, 2006 08:38 CET

Med överväldigande majoritet antog FN:s generalförsamling resolutionen om inrättandet av ett särskilt råd för mänskliga rättigheter. Röstsiffrorna var 170 för, fyra emot och tre som avstod. Amnesty välkomnar detta beslut, och ser det som ett historiskt steg för att stärka FN:s arbete för de mänskliga rättigheterna.

- Detta är en seger för de mänskliga rättigheterna, även om det bara är inledningen på ett hårt arbete, säger Yvonne Terlingen, Amnestys representant i FN. - Det är också glädjande att USA, trots att de röstade emot resolutionen, nu har lovat samarbeta med och ge sitt stöd till rådet.

Nästa steg i processen blir att rösta fram rådsmedlemmar som seriöst värnar om de mänskliga rättigheterna och därigenom bilda ett råd som blir starkt och effektivt.

Bakgrund

Det nya rådet för mänskliga rättigheter ska ersätta FN:s kommission för mänskliga rättigheter. Ett organ som har mött stark kritik under senare år bland annat för att flera av medlemmarna har varit stater där mycket allvarliga brott mot mänskliga rättigheter förekommer.

Rådet kommer att ha 47 medlemmar. Medlemmarna väljs för en period om maximalt sex år, och en stat som begår allvarliga brott mot mänskliga rättigheter kan uteslutas genom omröstning i generalförsamlingen med 2/3 dels majoritet.

Det unika systemet med oberoende experter och rapportörer, som har varit styrkan i den tidigare kommissionen, kommer att finnas kvar, liksom möjligheten för frivilligorganisationer att delta i rådets möten.


Läs hela uttalandet nedan.

Elisabeth Löfgren

pressekreterare
-----------------------------
Amnesty International
Swedish section
Box 4719
116 92 Stockholm
Phone: +46 (0)8-729 02 20
mobile: + 46 (0)70-433 09 16
Fax: +46 (0)8-729 02 01
http://www.amnesty.se
mailto: elisabeth.lofgren@amnesty.se



AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL
PRESS RELEASE

AI Index: IOR 40/009/2006 (Public)
News Service No: 065
15 March 2006

UN Human Rights Council: A victory for human rights protection

Amnesty International welcomes the overwhelming vote by the UN General Assembly today in favour of
establishing a new Human Rights Council. In doing so, UN member states have taken an historic step
towards strengthening the UN’s human rights machinery.

The US government’s decision to vote against the resolution was regrettable. However the result, 170 in
favour, 4 opposed and 3 abstaining, demonstrates unambiguous international support for the Council.

"This is a victory for human rights protection around the world," said Yvonne Terlingen, UN representative
for Amnesty International, "although the hard work is only just beginning. It is encouraging to hear that,
despite voting against the resolution, the US government will cooperate with the Council and support it."

The next task is for all states to work together to elect Council members who are solidly committed to
upholding human rights and ensuring that the Council is strong and effective.

Amnesty International calls on all candidate countries to:

Declare publicly their commitment to uphold the highest standards in the promotion and protection of
human rights when they decide to stand for election; and
Announce their candidacies no later than 8 April 2006 – at least thirty days before elections on 9 May
2006.

Election to the Council will be by individual secret ballot and members will have to achieve the absolute
majority support of the General Assembly. Regional groups have a responsibility to ensure that the spirit
of transparency for election to the Council is respected. Previous practice, in which regional groups
presented closed lists of countries immediately before elections, as occurred in the UN Commission for
Human Rights, must stop.

"All those elected to the Council must uphold the highest human rights standards, must cooperate fully
with the Council and must accept review of their own human rights record during their term of membership.
Any country not prepared to meet these requirements should not apply," said Yvonne Terlingen.

Background:

The draft resolution adopted today establishes a Council with a clear mandate to address all human rights
situations. The Council will have a more frequent meeting schedule (at least three times a year) and the
ability to convene more easily in special sessions, thereby allowing it to react more effectively to both
chronic and urgent situations. The new universal review mechanism should ensure that all countries'
human rights records are addressed periodically.

The resolution establishes an election procedure, which if taken seriously by UN member states, can give
the Council a membership much more committed to the promotion and protection of human rights than the
Commission on Human Rights in recent years. Instead of slates being adopted by acclamation as for the
Commission, each member of the Council must be elected individually. A higher threshold of votes
applies - at least 96 individual votes out of 191 members. All membership terms are limited to a maximum
of six years. Those committing gross and systematic violations of human rights can have their
membership suspended by a two-thirds majority of members of the General Assembly. The resolution
also preserves key strengths of the Commission, including its unique system of independent experts
known as "Special Procedures" and its practices of NGO participation. Amnesty International expects that
the Council will adopt an agenda that lends itself to better dialogue and action than the overloaded
agenda of the Commission on Human Rights.

For further information and interviews please contact:
In New York, Yvonne Terlingen. Mobile +1 917 406 1185
In Geneva, Peter Splinter. Mobile +41 (0) 79 352 83 02

Public Document
****************************************
For more information please call Amnesty International's press office in London, UK, on +44 20 7413
5566
Amnesty International, 1 Easton St., London WC1X 0DW. web: http://www.amnesty.org

For latest human rights news view http://news.amnesty.org