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AFTERNOON - Human Rights Council Adopts 11 Resolutions – Extends Three Mandates on Belarus, Syria and Mali, and Appoints 11 Special Procedure Mandate Holders

Meeting Summaries

 

The Human Rights Council this afternoon adopted 11 resolutions, in which it decided, among others, to extend mandates on Belarus, Syria and Mali. It also appointed 11 Special Procedure mandate holders before concluding its forty-ninth session.

The Council also adopted resolutions on ensuring equitable, affordable, timely and universal access for all countries to vaccines in response to the coronavirus disease pandemic; the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination; Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem and in the occupied Syrian Golan; human rights in the occupied Syrian Golan; combatting intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of, and discrimination, incitement to violence and violence against, persons based on religion or belief; strengthening the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund; cooperation with Georgia; and technical assistance and capacity building for South Sudan.

In a resolution on ensuring equitable, affordable, timely and universal access for all countries to vaccines in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, the Council requested the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to prepare a report on the human rights implications of and good practices and key challenges in affordable, timely, equitable and universal access to and distribution of quality, safe, efficacious and affordable COVID-19 vaccines and the impact on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.

In a resolution on the situation of human rights in Belarus in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election and in its aftermath, the Council decided to extend the mandate of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to, inter alia, carry out a comprehensive examination of all alleged human rights violations committed in Belarus since 1 May 2020.

In a resolution on the situation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic, the Council decided to extend the mandate of the Commission of Inquiry for a period of one year. The Council further requested the Commission of Inquiry to present an oral update to the Council during the interactive dialogue at its fiftieth session and to present an updated written report during an interactive dialogue at the fifty-first and fifty-second sessions of the Council.

In a resolution on the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, the Council reaffirmed the Palestinian people’s right to live in freedom, justice and dignity and the right to their independent State of Palestine. The Council called upon all States to ensure their obligations of non-recognition, non-aid or assistance with regard to the serious breaches of peremptory norms of international law by Israel; to adopt measures to promote the realization of the right to self-determination of the Palestinian people; and to assist the United Nations in carrying out its responsibilities regarding the implementation of this right.

In a resolution on Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan, the Council reaffirmed that the Israeli settlements established since 1967 in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan were illegal under international law, and constituted a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace. The Council requested the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to report on the implementation of the provisions of this resolution at the Council’s fifty-second session.

In a resolution on Human rights in the occupied Syrian Golan, the Council deplored the practices of the Israeli occupation authorities affecting the human rights of the Syrian citizens in the occupied Syrian Golan, and requested the Secretary-General to bring the present resolution to the attention of all Governments, the competent United Nations organs, specialized agencies, international and regional intergovernmental organizations and international humanitarian organizations, to disseminate it as widely as possible and to report on this matter to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-second session.

In a resolution on combatting intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of, and discrimination, incitement to violence and violence against, persons based on religion or belief, the Council called upon all States to take effective measures to ensure that public functionaries did not discriminate against individuals on the basis of religion or belief, to promote religious freedom and pluralism, to counter religious profiling, and to provide updates on efforts made in this regard to the Office of the High Commissioner. It further requested the High Commissioner to prepare and submit to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-second session a comprehensive follow-up report on the measures taken by States based on the recommendations of the Council.

In a resolution on strengthening the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to Support the Participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the Work of the Human Rights Council, the Council encouraged the Trust Fund to continue its training and capacity-building activities. The Council requested the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to prepare a report that would evaluate the activities of the Trust Fund and to present the report to the Human Rights Council at its sixty-fourth session.

In a resolution on cooperation with Georgia, the Council requested the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to continue to provide technical assistance through the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Tbilisi; and requested the High Commissioner to present to the Council, in accordance with its resolution 5/1 of 18 June 2007, an oral update on the follow-up to the present resolution at its fiftieth session, and to present a written report on developments relating to and the implementation of the present resolution at its fifty-first session.

In a resolution on technical assistance and capacity-building for Mali in the field of human rights, the Council decided to extend the mandate of the Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Mali for a period of one year in order to permit him to evaluate the situation of human rights in Mali and to provide his assistance in ensuring the promotion, protection and implementation of human rights and strengthening the rule of law. The Council requested the Independent Expert to submit a report to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-second session.

In a resolution on technical assistance and capacity-building for South Sudan, the Council requested the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, in cooperation with the Government of South Sudan and relevant mechanisms of the African Union, to urgently assist South Sudan to address human rights challenges in the post-conflict transition. The Council also requested the Office of the High Commissioner to present an oral update to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-first session, to be followed by an interactive dialogue.

In concluding remarks, Federico Villegas, President of the Human Rights Council, said this had been the longest session in the history of the Council, five full weeks. The forty-ninth session of the Human Rights Council had been a great challenge for multilateral diplomacy. It was essential to maintain the spirit of constructive dialogue when it came to implementing the mandates that emerged from the resolutions adopted by the Council at the session. The legacy of the session was 35 resolutions adopted, 18 by consensus and 16 that went to a vote. It was not a matter of picking and choosing the mandate that one liked and ignoring the mandate that one did not. It was about moving together the main machinery created by the international community for the promotion and protection of human rights worldwide.

Mr. Villegas also announced the appointment of the following 11 Special Procedure mandate holders: Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, member from Central and Eastern Europe, the Russian Federation, Central Asia and Transcaucasia – Antonina Gorbunova (Russian Federation); Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, member from Central and South America, and the Caribbean - Anexa Brendalee Alfred Cunningham (Nicaragua); Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, member from the Pacific - Valmaine Toki (New Zealand); Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of climate change - Ian Fry (Tuvalu);

Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan - Richard Bennett (New Zealand); Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Burundi - Fortuné Gaetan Zongo (Burkina Faso); Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967 - Francesca P. Albanese (Italy); Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, member from Western European and other States - Matthew Gillett (New Zealand); Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances, member from Asia-Pacific States - Angkhana Neelapaijit (Thailand); Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises, member from Asia-Pacific States - Pichamon Yeophantong (Thailand); and Working Group on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination, member from Latin American and Caribbean States - Carlos Alberto Salazar Couto (Peru).

The webcast of the Human Rights Council meetings can be found here. All meeting summaries can be found here. Documents and reports related to the Human Rights Council’s forty-ninth regular session can be found here.

The fiftieth regular session of the Human Rights Council is scheduled to be held from 13 June to 8 July 2022.

Action on Resolution under Agenda Item Three on the Promotion and Protection of All Human Rights, Civil, Political, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, including the Right to Development

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.32) on Ensuring equitable, affordable, timely and universal access for all countries to vaccines in response to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic , adopted without a vote as orally revised, the Council calls upon States and other relevant stakeholders to take appropriate measures to guarantee the fair, transparent, equitable, efficient, universal and timely access and distribution of safe, quality, efficacious, effective, accessible and affordable COVID-19 vaccines and to enable international cooperation. The Council further requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to prepare a report on the human rights implications of and good practices and key challenges in affordable, timely, equitable and universal access to and distribution of quality, safe, efficacious and affordable COVID-19 vaccines and the impact on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health, and submit the report to the Council at its fifty-second session, to be followed by an interactive dialogue, and to provide an oral update thereon to the Council at its fifty-first session.

Action on Resolutions under Agenda Item Four on Human Rights Situations that Require the Council’s Attention

In a resolution ( A/HRC/49/L.13) on the situation of human rights in Belarus in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election and in its aftermath , adopted by a vote of 22 in favour, 6 against and 19 abstentions as orally revised, the Council urges the Belarusian authorities to cooperate fully with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Belarus; decides to extend for a period of one year, the mandate of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, and requests the High Commissioner, with the assistance of the three appointed experts and special procedure mandate holders, to continue to monitor and report on the situation of human rights, to carry out a comprehensive examination of all alleged human rights violations committed in Belarus since 1 May 2020 in the run-up to the 2020 presidential election and in its aftermath, including the possible gender dimensions of such violations, to establish the facts and circumstances surrounding the alleged violations, and to collect, consolidate, preserve and analyse information and evidence, and where possible, to identify those responsible with a view to contributing to accountability for perpetrators and justice for victims, such as through relevant judicial and other proceedings, including criminal proceedings in courts and tribunals that have competent jurisdiction . The Council further requests the High Commissioner to present an interim oral update to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-first session, and a comprehensive written report at its fifty-second session, both to be followed by an interactive dialogue.

Prior to voting on and adopting the resolution, the Council voted on and rejected amendments L.36 and L.37.

The results of the vote on L.13 are as follows:

In favour (22): Argentina, Benin, Brazil, Finland, France, Gambia, Germany, Honduras, Japan, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Montenegro, Netherlands, Paraguay, Poland, Republic of Korea, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and United States

Against (6): Bolivia, China, Cuba, Eritrea, Russian Federation, and Venezuela

Abstentions (19): Armenia, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Gabon, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Libya, Malaysia, Mauritania, Namibia, Nepal, Pakistan, Qatar, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, and Uzbekistan.

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.30) on theSituation of human rights in the Syrian Arab Republic, adopted by a vote of 23 in favour, 7 against and 16 abstentions, the Council decides to extend the mandate of the Commission of Inquiry for a period of one year. The Council further requests the Commission of Inquiry to present an oral update to the Council during the interactive dialogue at its fiftieth session and to present an updated written report during an interactive dialogue at the fifty-first and fifty-second sessions of the Council. The Council also decides to transmit all reports and oral updates of the Commission of Inquiry to all relevant bodies of the United Nations, recommends that the General Assembly submit the reports to the Security Council for appropriate action, expresses its appreciation to the Commission for its briefings provided to members of the Council and Assembly, and recommends the continuation of such briefings.

The results of the vote are as follows:

In favour (23): Argentina, Benin, Côte d'Ivoire, Finland, France, Gabon, Germany, Honduras, Japan, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Montenegro, Netherlands, Paraguay, Poland, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and United States.

Against (7): Armenia, Bolivia, China, Cuba, Eritrea, Russian Federation, and Venezuela.

Abstentions (16): Brazil, Gambia, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Libya, Malaysia, Mauritania, Namibia, Nepal, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, and Uzbekistan.

Action on Resolutions under Agenda Item Seven on the Human Rights Situation in Palestine and other Occupied Arab Territories

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.17) on theRight of the Palestinian people to self-determination, adopted by a vote of 41 in favour, 3 against and 3 abstentions, the Council reaffirms the Palestinian people’s right to live in freedom, justice and dignity and the right to their independent State of Palestine. It also reaffirms the need to achieve a just, comprehensive and lasting peaceful solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, and called upon Israel, the occupying power, to immediately end its occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. The Council expresses grave concern at the fragmentation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, resulting from Israel’s continuing construction and expansion of settlements, forcible transfer of Palestinians and construction of the wall. The Council calls upon all States to ensure their obligations of non-recognition, non-aid or assistance with regard to the serious breaches of peremptory norms of international law by Israel; to adopt measures to promote the realization of the right to self-determination of the Palestinian people; and to assist the United Nations in carrying out its responsibilities regarding the implementation of this right.

The results of the vote are as follows:

In favour (41): Argentina, Armenia, Benin, Bolivia, Brazil, China, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Eritrea, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Libya, Luxembourg, Malawi, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mexico, Montenegro, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, Pakistan, Paraguay, Poland, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, and Venezuela.

Against (3): Marshall Islands, United Kingdom, and United States.

Abstentions (3): Cameroon, Honduras, and Lithuania.

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.18) on Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan , adopted by a vote of 38 in favour, 4 against and 5 abstentions, the Council reaffirms that the Israeli settlements established since 1967 in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan are illegal under international law, and constitute a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace. The Council further calls on Israel, the occupying Power, to end without delay its occupation of the territories occupied since 1967, and to stop immediately the establishment of new settlements and the expansion of existing settlements. The Council calls upon business enterprises to take all measures necessary to comply with their responsibilities under the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights and relevant international laws and standards with respect to their activities in or in relation to the Israeli settlements and the wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, to avoid the adverse impact of such activities on human rights. The Council requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to report on the implementation of the provisions of this resolution at the Council’s fifty-second session.

The results of the vote are as follows:

In favour (38): Argentina, Armenia, Benin, Bolivia, China, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Eritrea, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, Libya, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mexico, Montenegro, Namibia, Nepal, Netherlands, Pakistan, Paraguay, Poland, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Russian Federation, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, and Venezuela.

Against (4): Malawi, Marshall Islands, United Kingdom, and United States.

Abstentions (5): Brazil, Cameroon, Honduras, Lithuania, and Ukraine.

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.19) on Human rights in the occupied Syrian Golan, adopted by a vote of 29 in favour, 15 against and 3 abstentions, the Council demands that Israel stop its repressive measures against the Syrian citizens in the occupied Syrian Golan, and release immediately the Syrian detainees in Israeli prisons. The Council further deplores the practices of the Israeli occupation authorities affecting the human rights of the Syrian citizens in the occupied Syrian Golan, including the confiscation of private properties of Syrians by imposing so-called “Israeli documents” on them, expresses grave concern at the continued illegal exploitation of natural resources, the unlawful mine-laying practices of the Israeli occupation forces in the occupied Syrian Golan, and also expresses deep concern at the non-cooperation of Israel with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights. The Council requests the Secretary-General to bring the present resolution to the attention of all Governments, the competent United Nations organs, specialized agencies, international and regional intergovernmental organizations and international humanitarian organizations, to disseminate it as widely as possible and to report on this matter to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-second session.

The results of the vote are as follows:

In favour (29): Argentina, Armenia, Benin, Bolivia, China, Cote d'Ivoire, Cuba, Eritrea, Gabon, Gambia, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Libya, Malaysia, Mauritania, Mexico, Namibia, Nepal, Pakistan, Paraguay, Qatar, Russian Federation, Senegal, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, and Venezuela.

Against (15): Finland, France, Germany, Japan, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Montenegro, Netherlands, Poland, Republic of Korea, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and United States.

Abstentions (3): Brazil, Cameroon, and Honduras.

Action on Resolution under Agenda Item Nine on Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Forms of Intolerance, Follow-up to and Implementation of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.5) on Combatting intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization of, and discrimination, incitement to violence and violence against, persons based on religion or belief , adopted without a vote, the Council calls upon all States to take effective measures to ensure that public functionaries did not discriminate against individuals on the basis of religion or belief, to promote religious freedom and pluralism, to counter religious profiling, and to provide updates on efforts made in this regard to the Office of the High Commissioner. It further requests the High Commissioner to prepare and submit to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-second session a comprehensive follow-up report on the measures taken by States based on the recommendations of the Council.

Action on Resolutions under Agenda Item 10 on Technical Assistance and Capacity Building

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.3) on Strengthening the Voluntary Technical Assistance Trust Fund to Support the Participation of Least Developed Countries and Small Island Developing States in the Work of the Human Rights Council, adopted without a vote, the Council encourages the Trust Fund to continue its training and capacity-building activities by regularly updating and developing its e-learning tool, to conduct at least one briefing on the outcomes of the Human Rights Council each year in New York for least developed countries and small island developing States, to continue engaging former beneficiaries of the Trust Fund from Africa, Asia, the Caribbean and the Pacific, and to conduct a regional workshop identifying where further improvements to the Trust Fund’s activities might be made. The Council requests the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to prepare a report that will evaluate the activities of the Trust Fund and to present the report to the Human Rights Council at its sixty-fourth session.

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.27) on Cooperation with Georgia, adopted by a vote of 19 in favour, 6 against and 20 abstentions, the Council requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to continue to provide technical assistance through the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Tbilisi; demands that immediate and unimpeded access be given to the Office of the High Commissioner and international and regional human rights mechanisms to Abkhazia, Georgia and the Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia, Georgia; and requests the High Commissioner to present to the Council, in accordance with its resolution 5/1 of 18 June 2007, an oral update on the follow-up to the present resolution at its fiftieth session, and to present a written report on developments relating to and the implementation of the present resolution at its fifty-first session.

The results of the vote are as follows:

In favour (19): Finland, France, Gambia, Germany, Honduras, Japan, Libya, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malawi, Mexico, Montenegro, Netherlands, Paraguay, Poland, Somalia, Ukraine, United Kingdom, and United States.

Against (6): Bolivia, China, Cuba, Eritrea, Russian Federation, and Venezuela.

Abstentions (20): Argentina, Benin, Brazil, Cameroon, Cote d'Ivoire, Gabon, India, Indonesia, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mauritania, Namibia, Nepal, Pakistan, Qatar, Republic of Korea, Senegal, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, and Uzbekistan.

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.33) on Technical assistance and capacity-building for Mali in the field of human rights , adopted without a vote, the Council decides to extend the mandate of the Independent Expert on the situation of human rights in Mali for a period of one year in order to permit him to evaluate the situation of human rights in Mali and to provide his assistance in ensuring the promotion, protection and implementation of human rights and strengthening the rule of law. The Council requests the Independent Expert to submit a report to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-second session. The Council also decides to hold a dialogue at its fifty-second session, in the presence of the Independent Expert and representatives of the Transitional Government of Mali, to assess the changes in the situation of human rights in the country, with a particular focus on the issues of the protection of civic space and respect for the rule of law. The Council requests the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to continue to provide the technical assistance requested by the Transitional Government of Mali in order to strengthen the capacity of the National Human Rights Commission of Mali.

In a resolution (A/HRC/49/L.34) on Technical assistance and capacity-building for South Sudan , adopted without a vote, the Council requests the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, in cooperation with the Government of South Sudan and relevant mechanisms of the African Union, to urgently assist South Sudan to address human rights challenges in the post-conflict transition, by inter alia determining the capacity-building needs of South Sudanese institutions in order that they may pursue transitional justice and investigate and prosecute conflict-related crimes; providing the Government of South Sudan with technical assistance for the establishment of the transitional justice institutions under chapter V of the Revitalized Agreement, and building the capacity of local courts to investigate and prosecute conflict-related crimes, with a view to improving accountability and promoting reconciliation and healing in South Sudan; and reporting to the Council on the support provided to the Government of South Sudan in the form of technical and capacity-building support in accordance with the terms of the present resolution. The Council also requests the Office of the High Commissioner to present an oral update to the Human Rights Council at its fifty-first session, to be followed by an interactive dialogue, including on progress made with the participation of representatives of the African Union, and to present a comprehensive report to the Council at its fifty-second session, to be followed by an interactive dialogue.

Appointment of Mandate Holders

FEDERICO VILLEGAS, President of the Human Rights Council, announced the appointment of the following 11 Special Procedure mandate holders:

Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, member from Central and Eastern Europe, the Russian Federation, Central Asia and Transcaucasia – Antonina Gorbunova (Russian Federation);

Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, member from Central and South America, and the Caribbean - Anexa Brendalee Alfred Cunningham (Nicaragua);

Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, member from the Pacific - Valmaine Toki (New Zealand);

Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights in the context of climate change - Ian FRY (Tuvalu);

Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Afghanistan - Richard Bennett (New Zealand);

Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Burundi - Fortuné Gaetan Zongo (Burkina Faso);

Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967 - Francesca P. Albanese (Italy);

Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, member from Western European and other States - Matthew Gillett (New Zealand);

Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances, member from Asia-Pacific States - Angkhana Neelapaijit (Thailand);

Working Group on the issue of human rights and transnational corporations and other business enterprises, member from Asia-Pacific States - Pichamon Yeophantong (Thailand);

Working Group on the use of mercenaries as a means of violating human rights and impeding the exercise of the right of peoples to self-determination, member from Latin American and Caribbean States - Carlos Alberto Salazar Couto (Peru).

Concluding Remarks

FEDERICO VILLEGAS, President of the Human Rights Council, said that this had been the longest session in the history of the Council, five full weeks. The forty-ninth session of the Council had been a great challenge for multilateral diplomacy. It was essential to maintain the spirit of constructive dialogue when it came to implementing the mandates that emerged from the resolutions adopted by the Council at this session. During the negotiation stage of these mandates, it was absolutely legitimate for each country to have a national position to defend on an issue or on a country situation. But as members of the Human Rights Council elected by the entire membership of the United Nations, one did not solely sit in a national capacity and project its own foreign policy or values. One had another hat: the collective responsibility to strengthen the action of the Council to improve human rights around the world. And that also meant supporting the implementation of all the mandates that came out of the Council, even those that perhaps during discussions in their national capacity one did not agree with.

The Human Rights Council was a multilateral and democratic body. It was governed by clear rules that were approved to adopt decisions, sometimes by consensus, but when there was no consensus voting was the rule. The legacy of the forty-ninth session of the Human Rights Council was 35 resolutions adopted, 18 by consensus and 16 that went to a vote. It was not a matter of picking and choosing the mandate that one liked and ignoring the mandate that one did not. It was about moving together the main machinery created by the international community for the promotion and protection of human rights worldwide.

 

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HRC22.059E