babble home
rabble.ca - news for the rest of us
today's active topics


  
FAQ | Forum Home
  next oldest topic   next newest topic
» babble   » archived babble   » the middle east and central asia   » Demands to stop Libya from chairing human rights commission

Email this thread to someone!    
Author Topic: Demands to stop Libya from chairing human rights commission
swallow
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2659

posted 15 January 2003 12:29 PM      Profile for swallow     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Gadhafi's "appalling" UN bid

quote:
OTTAWA -- Key Liberal backbenchers and the opposition expressed dismay, bewilderment and anger yesterday at federal indecision about whether to oppose Libya's bid for the chairmanship of the UN Human Rights Commission....

Canada should be joining with the United States to do everything possible to prevent Libya from assuming the chair, Mr. Day said.


Wow, even Stockwell Day can get it right once in w hile. Let's get a UN human rights commission where respect for human rights is a criterion for membership.


From: fast-tracked for excommunication | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mimichekele2
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3232

posted 15 January 2003 12:31 PM      Profile for Mimichekele2        Edit/Delete Post
Should this not be filed under Middle East?

It would be a good addition there. Under Middle East, we only have threads about the damn Israelis and the damn Palestinians.

There are some 25 other countries in the Middle East. It would nice to talk about their politics, culture, economies, music, literature sometimes.


From: More lawyers, fewer bricks! | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mimichekele2
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3232

posted 15 January 2003 12:37 PM      Profile for Mimichekele2        Edit/Delete Post
FYI, the Human Rights Watch documentation on Libya:

http://www.hrw.org/mideast/libya.php


From: More lawyers, fewer bricks! | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
jeff house
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 518

posted 15 January 2003 05:48 PM      Profile for jeff house     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
After having read Mimichekele's link, it seems to me that the case against Libya is solid, and it should not be allowed to chair the Human Right Commission.

Obviously, though, there has to be some recognition that few countries are perfect, and campaigns can be mounted against each of them.
It would be unfortunate, for example, if no African, no Arab, and no Asian country be allowed to chair the Committee.

And some who think they should be chair could be objected to on other grounds. For example, there are two main UN Conventions on Human Rights. The US has signed one of them, having failed to sign the Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cutural Rights. This Convention covers many important rights, such as, for example, this one:

The right to.....

quote:
(d) The creation of conditions which would assure to all, medical service and medical attention in the event of sickness.

The tradition thus far has been to allow pretty much anyone to Chair the Committee when their turn comes. But if we are going to have campaigns
suggesting some are not worthy, then it is important to bear in mind that supporting and signing the most important Covenants might also be seen to be a condition precedent.


From: toronto | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
kropotkin1951
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2732

posted 15 January 2003 06:03 PM      Profile for kropotkin1951   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
The problem is that no country is above reproach. Complaints have been made against Canada and the US as well. A worse outcome would be for the US to gain an effect veto by default over which coutries get to Chair committees at the UN. The UN will lose whatever credibility it has left if the US is allowed to get its own way on every issue.
From: North of Manifest Destiny | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mimichekele2
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3232

posted 15 January 2003 06:30 PM      Profile for Mimichekele2        Edit/Delete Post
I don't think anybody ever took the UN Human Rights Commission that seriously given its composition (a majority of torture states)

But Libya as chair?

A one-party state that routinely tortures?

The state that conducted the Lockerbie bombing?

The state that blew up the Brazzaville-Paris UTA flight UT772 in September 1989 with all 170 aboard killed (6 high Libyan diplomatic and secret officials including Kaddafi's brother-in-law found guilty in French criminal court)?

etc etc etc

Someone has to do something. Hopefully not the US. But Canada, France (a major target of Libyan attacks in the past), the EU, democratic South Africa, certainly someone can step up to the plate.

Maybe the UN Commission should be disbanded and all its money handed over to Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International and other NGOs. That would make sense.


From: More lawyers, fewer bricks! | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
kropotkin1951
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2732

posted 15 January 2003 06:38 PM      Profile for kropotkin1951   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Maybe the UN Commission should be disbanded and all its money handed over to Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International and other NGOs. That would make sense.

Great idea. And yes Libya's past is truly gruesome. However the country that used a cruise missle to destroy a pharmacutical factory and killed innocent lives is not the country to now decide who is qualified to chair a human rights committee.

Maybe Idi Amin will return, he would be as good a candidate or maybe Sihorto, a good American ally for soooo many years.


From: North of Manifest Destiny | Registered: Jun 2002  |  IP: Logged
Mimichekele2
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3232

posted 15 January 2003 06:43 PM      Profile for Mimichekele2        Edit/Delete Post
But what should Canada's delegation do?
From: More lawyers, fewer bricks! | Registered: Oct 2002  |  IP: Logged
Moredreads
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3393

posted 15 January 2003 06:51 PM      Profile for Moredreads     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Should this not be filed under Middle East?

I concur, it seems more and more that the Middle East forum is actually a Palestine/Israel forum. If it is that, then is should be called that.


From: Canada | Registered: Nov 2002  |  IP: Logged
sheep
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2119

posted 15 January 2003 06:55 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
However the country that used a cruise missle to destroy a pharmacutical factory and killed innocent lives is not the country to now decide who is qualified to chair a human rights committee.

By your standards, there'll be an empty chair of the UN human right's committee for all eternity. So may as well just disband it. It's a farce anyways.


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
Sean Tisdall
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 3465

posted 15 January 2003 07:05 PM      Profile for Sean Tisdall   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
It's nice to see that democratic socialists have little tolerance for an authoritarian socialist. Viva Democratia!
From: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Dimension XY | Registered: Dec 2002  |  IP: Logged
DrConway
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 490

posted 15 January 2003 10:22 PM      Profile for DrConway     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
I think an is in order.
From: You shall not side with the great against the powerless. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
Babbler # 560

posted 15 January 2003 10:28 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Sorry, didn't notice this until now. Moving to the Middle East forum.

Say folks, if you want something done, you can always private message me.


From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
swallow
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2659

posted 16 January 2003 12:12 PM      Profile for swallow     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Sorry if i posted this in the wrong forum (current Libyan party line is to say the country is part of Africa, but whatever).

Seems to me that for the Commission on Human Rights, if nothing else, it's possible to get human rights made a criterion for membership. The USA was voted off the CHR a few years back for this very reason (its actions were seen to be harming international human rights law). It is now back on the CHR.

Libya is in this position because of the principle of rotation among geographical blocs -- this year, it's Africa's turn. That's a good principle, but other African CHR members like Senegal and South Africa would make far better candidates. The trouble IMHO is that regional blocs are allowed to choose their own nominees by consensus (so Libya can in effect buy votes through its funding to the African Union). A better system might be to let all countries vote on which African country could best do the job. And CHR membership should be conditional on ratification and respect for major UN human rights laws.

Anyway, that's a rambling way to say i think the system can be fixed, and tossing it out the window would be ill-advised. The CHR has done a great deal of good despite its numerous problems, and can do more.


From: fast-tracked for excommunication | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
Babbler # 560

posted 16 January 2003 12:28 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Yeah, that's another reason why I didn't move it right away when I did notice the thread - I wasn't sure whether Libya was considered a part of the Middle East.
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 16 January 2003 01:17 PM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Libya is just on the border between the Machrek (Arab Middle East) and Maghreb (North Africa). The dividing line is the point where the desert meets the sea, in Libya.

The Middle East usually also includes such non-Arab Muslim countries as Turkey and Iran, and Israel.

Some anglophone press sources include the Maghreb (Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco, and perhaps Mauritania) in the Middle East. Francophone press sources classify it under Africa.

(Edited to add): But I believe the BBC classifies Turkey, which is seeking EU membership, in Europe, on the basis of a small part of that country. Perhaps Russia/former USSR are the precedent, but it is a bit different as although the majority of the Russian land mass is in Asia (Siberia), the European part was much more important from a historical and population standpoint.

[ 16 January 2003: Message edited by: lagatta ]


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
sheep
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2119

posted 16 January 2003 01:31 PM      Profile for sheep     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Even though it might go against the grain of what the UN is supposed to be all about, part of the problem may be the idea of a "country" having membership on something like the UN Human Rights Commission. Maybe we should put more weight onto the individual holding the chair and less on the country holding it.

I have a huge problem with the country of Libya holding the chair of the UNHRC, but I have no doubts whatsoever that there are Libyan citizens who could perform the role, and do so admirably.

[ 16 January 2003: Message edited by: sheep ]


From: Vancouver | Registered: Jan 2002  |  IP: Logged
lagatta
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2534

posted 16 January 2003 01:41 PM      Profile for lagatta     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
That is true, sheep, I don't know any human rights activists from Libya but know others from Arab countries that were or in some cases still are extremely oppressive (those I know best are from Morocco, where the human rights situation is far better than it used to be under Hassan II). Believe the international human rights association in that world region is called the Arab Human Rights League, it works with Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, La Ligue des droits de l'homme etc.

Indeed, it is important, if there is to be a regional forum, that it should deal with economic, social, cultural and human rights issues other than Israel/Palestine and the war against Iraq.

One thing I'd be really interested in hearing more about is to what extent people in Lebanon have been able to rebuild their country and society and ease sectarian and factional tensions from the long civil war.


From: Se non ora, quando? | Registered: Apr 2002  |  IP: Logged
swallow
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 2659

posted 22 January 2003 01:49 PM      Profile for swallow     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
So, Libya got it. The individual selected sounds decent enough, which i suppose is something, although she will of course have to follow her government's orders. At least Canada opposed this travesty.

Paul Knox says the biggest tragedy here is that African governments have hurt their case for aid. My hope is that the new African Union will copy the European Union and set some human rights standards for its members -- i'm writing to Bill Graham to ask that Canada lobby for a human rights arm of the AU and direct some of its aid that way.


From: fast-tracked for excommunication | Registered: May 2002  |  IP: Logged
rbil
rabble-rouser
Babbler # 582

posted 22 January 2003 01:54 PM      Profile for rbil     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
quote:
Yeah, that's another reason why I didn't move it right away when I did notice the thread - I wasn't sure whether Libya was considered a part of the Middle East.

It's NOT! Methinks we're getting a little bit over-moderated around here.


From: IRC: irc.bcwireless.net JOIN: #linuxtalk | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
Michelle
Moderator
Babbler # 560

posted 22 January 2003 02:03 PM      Profile for Michelle   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message      Edit/Delete Post
Hey, all I did was to go along with what seemed to be a consensus on this thread. Next Libya thread I'll leave wherever it winds up no matter how many private messages and public exhortations I get to move it, okay?
From: I've got a fever, and the only prescription is more cowbell. | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged

All times are Pacific Time  

   Close Topic    Move Topic    Delete Topic next oldest topic   next newest topic
Hop To:

Contact Us | rabble.ca | Policy Statement

Copyright 2001-2008 rabble.ca