Iran has reportedly withdrawn its bid, in advance of May 13 elections, for a seat on the U.N. Human Rights Council. Days earlier, B’nai B’rith International wrote to members of the United Nations General Assembly, urging them to vote against Iran’s quest for a seat on the council.
President Dennis W. Glick and Executive Vice President Daniel S. Mariaschin wrote: “We strongly maintain that the election of Iran to this body would do profound, irreparable damage to the prospect of meaningfully reforming a vital but still greatly flawed institution and of redirecting the Council away from the current atmosphere of selectivity and politicization.”
The letter notes that if members consider, as they are expected to, how each nation-candidate promotes and protects human rights, they will conclude that Iran’s appalling record would preclude it from serving on a body charged with supervising human rights around the world. Glick and Mariaschin note that the brutal Iranian regime has “suppressed citizen's right to free assembly and free expression. Those whom the government has broadly defined as members of the opposition have been detained and, in many cases, subjected to torture. Human rights defenders in Iran have faced similar treatment for years. Iran has also been a persistent and particularly egregious violator of the rights of women, children, and minorities.”
The letter also notes: “Allowing such a Member State to win a seat at the Human Rights Council would serve as an added insult to the victims of the Iranian government and signal to the rest of the world that the Council is not serious about its mission to protect and promote universal human rights.”
> Click here to read the letter sent to General Assembly members.