PH on ‘list of shame’ for rejecting UN General Assembly condemnation of rights abuses in Iran

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 22 2020 05:59 AM

A woman place flowers next to photos of some of the people executed in Iran during a rally in front of the United Nations headquarters during the 73rd session of the United Nations General Assembly on Sept. 25, 2018, in New York. The rally, organized by the Organization of Iranian American Communities, highlighted human rights abuses and called for democratic change in Iran. Andres Kudacki, AP/file

MANILA — Geneva-based United Nations (UN) Watch has included the Philippines on its “list of shame” after the country’s representative in the UN voted against a draft resolution at the UN General Assembly condemning Iran for its alleged human rights abuses. 

A total of 32 countries voted against the resolution crafted by the UN's Third Committee, which focuses on social, humanitarian, and cultural issues. 

 

Besides the Philippines, those who voted against the draft resolution were North Korea, Russia, China, Pakistan, India, and Iraq, the list posted by UN Watch showed. 

Seventy-nine countries, meanwhile, voted in favor of the resolution while 64 abstained. 

The draft resolution would have the UN General Assembly raise the alarm on the human rights situation in Iran. 

“A draft resolution on human rights in Iran would have the General Assembly express serious concern at the alarmingly high frequency of death penalty imposition, particularly against minors,” a statement released by the UN in its website on Wednesday read. 

That resolution aimed to hold Iran accountable and would have called on the country to ensure that human rights would be upheld. 

“It would call on Iran to ensure that no one is subjected to torture — or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment — and to end the widespread and systematic use of arbitrary arrests and detention, including the practice of enforced disappearance,” the organization said. 

According to its website, the UN Watch is a non-governmental organization that “monitors the UN by the yardstick of its own charter and, influences decision-makers, educates world opinion and promotes UN reform, transparency and accountability.”

The organization also said it aims to protect human rights for victims globally. 

Iran’s representative, other countries slam UN for ‘country-specific reso’

The representative of Iran pointed out that the “politically motivated” draft resolution reflected the behavior of those manipulating human rights issues. 

The representative also denounced the unlawful unilateral coercive measures imposed in Iran, according to the statement. 

Other countries also slammed the UN for using “country-specific resolutions” such as the one drafted against Iran, saying the “punitive action” does not advance human rights. 

“Many delegations broadly rejected the use of country-specific resolutions, with Cuba’s representative noting that they are ‘only used against developing countries,’ it read. 

“In a similar vein, the representative of the Russian Federation said country-specific resolutions ‘have nothing to do with the protection of human rights’ and only undermine the principle of State sovereignty. Burundi’s representative likewise characterized them as ‘counterproductive.’”

In October, the country called for an end to the "weaponization and politically motivated use of human rights," amid continuous calls of activists and experts in the country to investigate the current administration's alleged abuses.

President Rodrigo Duterte, meanwhile, has repeatedly slammed UN officials for expressing concern over the Philippines' anti-narcotics campaign that has seen thousands killed after allegedly fighting authorities, according to police figures.

Human rights groups say the death toll is higher and does not include killings by alleged state-sponsored "vigilantes" -- which the government denies.