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United Nations Watch: Human rights? | TribLIVE.com
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United Nations Watch: Human rights?

Countries that challenge the United Nations’ abysmal record on human rights typically are ignored. Some are chastised.

But Norway?

At the recent Oslo Freedom Forum, Bard Glad Pedersen, Norway’s secretary for foreign affairs, took issue with the “gap” between “commitment on one hand” and “reality on the ground,” which he said is “unacceptable.”

Mr. Pedersen continued: “In the U.N., states with bad human rights records are actively working to undermine human rights and they are building alliances among themselves. This threatens human rights and also confidence in the U.N.,” according to the group U.N. Watch.

That’s hardly surprising with the likes of China, Cuba, Saudi Arabia and Venezuela among the Human Rights Council’s 47 members.

This sorry joke wasn’t lost on a contingent of North Korean officials, who recently showed up at a U.N. human rights event. Members laughed at accounts from former North Korean labor camp detainees and they mocked the ambassador of Botswana with a racial epithet, according to one account. This, when former prisoners told of being beaten until they vomited blood and tortured while they hung upside down, CNN reports.

Yet the U.N.’s advocates for human rights pay lip service to North Korea while routinely excoriating their favorite whipping boy, Israel. It’s an intolerable mockery that turns the very concept of “human rights” on its head.


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