Geneva [Switzerland], April 6 (ANI): Hillel Neuer, Executive Director of United Nations Watch on Wednesday urged the 2022 Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy to expel Russia, China, and Pakistan from United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) over Ukraine invasion, human rights abuses and terrorism respectively.
Welcoming the representatives at the 14th Geneva Summit, he said, "We meet today at a fascinating moment. It is only the second time in history that Member-States of UNHRC is likely to be removed tomorrow. The US announced that working together with Ukraine and other European states, they will move to suspend Russia from the Council."
Geneva Summit for Human Rights and Democracy meet to shine a global spotlight on urgent situations of human rights and to place them on the international agenda.
"At Geneva Summit we elevate and empower the oppressed, those who dare to speak out in the name of freedom and human dignity for their people," said Neuer.
On Tuesday, US Ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas Greenfield said, "Russia should not have a position of authority in the body whose purpose is to promote respect for human rights. Not only this is the height of hypocracy, but it is also dangerous. Russia is using its membership in the Council as a platform for propaganda to suggest that it has a legitimate concern for human rights. Russia's participation in the Council hurts its credibility, undermines the entire UN and is just playing wrong."
Neuer further stated that Russia will be ousted from UNHRC as Greenfield will lead the push with Ukraine and European states.
"It's guaranteed to pass because only a handful will vote No and abstentions won't count for the required two-thirds majority," said Neuer.
Reports of Russia's mass killings of Ukrainian civilians in the city of Bucha have persuaded the Biden administration to seek Moscow's removal from the UN Human Rights Council after a month-long delay.
The Human Rights Council has faced persistent criticism for giving an international platform to human-rights-abusing regimes, including Russia, China, and Cuba. The dictatorships that hold membership in the body often use their status for propaganda purposes and to advance criticism of Western countries intended to deflect from their own human-rights records.
"This is exactly what we have been saying all along when we first tried to stop Russia, China and Cuba from getting elected in the first place in 2020. We couldn't get any governments to say these words. From day one, the invasion in February, we called on Russia to be expelled. We hope that the resolution tomorrow pass with a large majority. After Russia is removed, we urge the same to be done to other dictatorships on the Council. China too does not belong to Human Rights Council nor does the Cuban dictatorship. Venezuela, the narco-criminal state also does not belong here. I urge everyone to sign the petition that we launched," said Neuer.
He also questioned the membership of non-democratic countries in the Council.
"What US ambassador said about Russia applies perfectly to HRC members like Eretria, which have slave labours; Libya which tortures African migrants; Mauritania which has slavery; Pakistan which hosts terrorists; Somalia with female-genital mutilations. People ask the UN, why do the organization have non-democracies? 68 per cent of the members are non-democracies," added Neuer.
The annual world assembly discusses human rights dissidents, pro-democracy activists, former political prisoners and family members and representatives of current political prisoners. (ANI)