The United States announced its intention to quit the United Nations Human Rights Council, a decision, which according to Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and US Ambassador to the world body Nikki Haley “stemmed from the council’s protection of Human Rights abusers and a clear bias against Israel.”
“For too long the Human Rights Council has been a protector of human rights abusers and a cesspool of political bias. Regrettably, it is now clear that our call for reform was not headed. Human rights abusers continue to serve on and be elected to the council. The world’s most inhumane regimes continue to escape scrutiny and the council continues politicizing and scape-goating of countries with positive human rights records in an attempt to distract from the abusers and their ranks. Therefore, as we said we would do a year ago, if we did not see any progress, the United States is officially withdrawing from the U.N. Human Rights Council. In doing so, I want to make it crystal clear that this step is not a retreat from human rights commitments, on the contrary, we take this step because our commitment does not allow us to remain a part of a hypocritical and self-serving organization that makes a mockery of human rights,” U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said.
Ambassador Haley noted that while “like-minded countries urged the United States to remain in the council,” they were unwilling to confront the unjust status quo of obsessively condemning Israel, unless it was behind closed doors.
“There are several countries on the Human Rights Council who do share our values. Many of them strongly urged us to remain engaged in the council. They are embarrassed by the mistreatment of Israel. They share our alarm with the hypocrisy of countries like Cuba, Venezuela, Democratic Republic of Congo, and others serving on the council. Ultimately, many of these like-minded countries were unwilling to seriously challenge the status quo. We gave them opportunity after opportunity and many months of consultations and yet they would not take a stand unless it was behind closed doors. Some even admit that they were fine with the blatant flaws of the council as long as they could pursue their own narrow agenda within the current structure,” Haley said.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Office released a statement, following the American decision, thanking the United States for the “courageous decision against the hypocrisy and the lies of the so-called UN Human Rights Council,” while accusing the world body’s council of betraying its mission of protecting Human Rights.