The UN General Assembly just voted to expel Russia from Human Rights Council, following widespread condemnation of atrocities allegedly committed by the Russian military against people in Ukraine.
Russian membership in the Organization of American States’ top humanitarian body was suspended by the organization’s general assembly, with 93 nations voting in support and 58 countries abstaining.
Russia was one of 23 countries that voted against the new measure.
The countries which voted for and against Russia's suspension from the UN Human Rights Council pic.twitter.com/xhZs7GfIV4
— BNO News (@BNONews) April 7, 2022
More on the Vote
The vote follows at least two resolutions in the General Assembly, denouncing Russia for its assault on Ukraine, which took place on March 2 and March 24, respectively.
It was Ukraine’s delegation to the United Nations, which is also a part of the Human Rights Council, that put forward the resolution for discussion.
A mechanism for suspending the participation of a council that “commits serious and systematic abuses of human rights” was incorporated into the council’s founding documents when it was established in 2006.
Earlier in the day, Ukraine’s ambassador to the United Nations, Sergiy Kyslytsya, stated the country saw the vote as “a unique and unprecedented step.”
Russia’s activities, on the other hand, are out of the question. Russia, among other things, is violating human rights and threatening the foundations of world peace and security.
The ambassador slammed countries that voted against the measure or refrained from voting on it.
A red dot will appear on the screen, crimson as the bloodshed by innocent people who have lost their lives when they press the ‘no’ button.”
In addition, “this picture of the red, bleeding dots on this display will remain with us and all of us so long as our memories don’t fail us,” Kyslystya stated emphatically in her speech.
Speaking prior to the vote, Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations denounced the proposal as “theatrics” and warned Russia’s expulsion from the council “may set a dangerous precedent.”
Human Rights Organization Backlash
The human rights organization is sometimes condemned for admitting countries to its members who have committed heinous human rights violations of their own.
While Eritrea was voted to the body in 2021, it was accused by the United States and other countries of assisting the Ethiopian state in its civil war and assisting in significant human rights violations against the indigenous Tigray community.
Final vote of the United Nations General Assembly resolution to kick Russia out of the UN Human Rights Council.
Russia is out. pic.twitter.com/wp4lffFS6b
— Mark Leon Goldberg (@MarkLGoldberg) April 7, 2022
It has also been criticized for placing an undue emphasis on criticizing claimed human rights violations by the State of Israel.
However, advocates argue including other countries in the discussion is an important part of attempts to resolve such issues.
It is anticipated that council members will uphold the standards of human rights that have been established by the United Nations.
Following the United States’ resignation from the United Nations Security Council in 2018, the Biden administration advocated for the country’s politics to the body in 2021.