The UNHRC has become a political body whose decisions have nothing to do with human rights; it is used by western governments as an instrument and fig leaf to cover what they are doing following their political agendas, analysts told RT.

Trends Global terrorism, Syria unrest, Yemen unrest
Russia lost its membership in the UN Human Rights Council on Friday, after it failed to garner enough votes in the elections to the body at the general assembly.

Saudi Arabia was successfully re-elected, despite its domestic and external human rights record. Beheadings are common practice in the country, with more than 150 people killed this way in 2015 alone, according to numerous human rights organizations.

RT asked analysts whether it was a fair decision, given Riyadh's record.

According to Daoud Khairallah, International Law professor at Georgetown University, “it is absolutely shocking.”

He noted that members of the general assembly, who voted for countries to be represented in the Human Rights Council, are not just ordinary people from the street who could have fallen victim to the “huge propaganda machine that is trying to distort reality.” On the contrary, he said, these people are “in the know” and they “should know at least the records of countries that they are re-electing as members to the UNHRC.”

“It absolutely defies any logic that a country like Saudi Arabia — with a consistent record of violating international law, any kind of civil law inside the kingdom and beyond, a promoter of terrorism” — is being re-elected a member of the human rights body, said Khairallah.

It is also “shocking,” he went on, that the US is supporting Riyadh, given that only recently the American Congress voted to override President Obama’s veto on a bill allowing the families of those killed in the 9/11 attacks to sue Saudi Arabia for any role in the terrorist plot.

Despite so many voices in the US and elsewhere in the world saying that Saudi Arabia “has been a promoter of terrorism,” it is Russia that is being punished.

“[Russia] is almost singlehandedly, with some allies, trying to fight terrorism in Syria, and calling on the whole world to fight terrorism – it should be punished for that. Those countries who are voting, who are casting such votes, do they realize what they are doing to the moral authority of this organ that is called the UN Human Rights Council? Do they know what they are doing to the UN’s credibility and moral authority? It is really shocking and shameful for those who have voted for it!”  Khairallah concluded.

Willy Van Damme, investigative journalist says that the UNHRC is a political body whose decisions “never have anything to do with human rights.” But politics must be put aside on such matters.


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