Controversy over newly elected U.N. Human Rights Council members

By Julie Inglese

On Tuesday, China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam, Cuba, and Algeria won seats on the U.N. Human Rights Council. 

recent article from The Washington Post has noted that many groups have nothing kind to say about the newly elected countries. This includes UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer who said, “China, Cuba, Russia, and Saudi Arabia systematically violate the human rights of their own citizens, and they consistently vote the wrong way on U.N. initiatives to protect the human rights of others… For the U.N. to elect Saudi Arabia as a world judge on human rights would be like a town making a pyromaniac into chief of the fire department.” 

Neuer is not the only one with strong feelings about the election. Humans rights groups have been claiming the newly elected representatives undermine the council’s credibility. Human Rights Watch has pointed out that five of the new council members have refused to allow U.N. visits to investigate alleged abuses, which generally means a country has "a lot of explaining to do." 

Continuing reading about the controversy over at The Washington Post