Pakistan Urges UNs Top Rights Body To Avoid double Standards, Address Kashmir Situation

  • February 16, 2024

UNITED NATIONS, (APP – UrduPoint / Pakistan Point News – 17th Feb, 2024) Pakistan has called on the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) to shift its attention to economic, social and cultural rights instead of “disproportionately” focusing on human rights situations in developing countries.

“The Council and human rights mechanisms should also address historical and current phenomena such as racial discrimination, xenophobia, social inequalities, Islamophobia, and hate crimes,” Ambassador Munir Akram said in a discussion on the future of the Geneva-based Council.

“While some situations are prominently projected and amplified at the HRC; other, more serious situations — Jammu & Kashmir — are ignored,” he said, underscoring the need for avoiding double standards in addressing rights “situations” at the U.N.

The 47-member Council, armed with more powers, was created in 2006 following the failures of its predecessor — the 1946 Human Rights Commission.

“Today,” the Pakistani envoy said, “the HRC is also the target of serious criticism and suffers from many of the same deficits as the Commission; in particular due to the Council’s political biases, selective and partial approach, and structural issues – which seriously jeopardize its credibility.”

“There is a greater emphasis on civil and political rights, while economic, social and cultural rights – as well as the right to development – get short shrift,” Ambassador Akram told participants.

The Council’s agenda, he noted, has been overloaded with some subjects that should be dealt with by the UN’s specialized agencies. “There is a concerted effort by Western countries to impose norms which are clearly incompatible with the national laws and cultures of other countries — sexual orientation, gender identity,” the Pakistani envoy said, pointing out that some of its mechanisms as also the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights are largely staffed by nationals from developed countries.

“There is a need to rationalize the entire human rights structure – the agenda, meetings and special sessions, mandate holders and the High Commissioner’s Office.”

Pakistan, he said, believes that the promotion of human rights is a shared responsibility that can only be achieved through an objective, transparent, non-selective, constructive, non-confrontational and non-politicized manner.

“There is a need to strengthen cooperation, technical assistance and support to the developing states on human rights issues at their request, in a non-confrontational and cooperative manner,”

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