UNGA vote

UNGA Vote To Suspend Russia From UNHRC Over Ukraine Crisis

When will it occur, and who will initiate it?

In response to a request from the countries of Antigua and Barbuda, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Georgia, Japan and Liberia as well as the European Union’s Delegation on behalf of its 27 members, the United Nations General Assembly will hold its emergency special session on Thursday. This is the second session.

The Assembly will vote on a draft resolution that will stop the Russian Federation from being a member of the Human Rights Council.

What is the United Nations Human Rights Council?

The Human Rights Council is made up of 47 countries that were chosen by secret vote by a majority of the members of the General Assembly. They were chosen directly and individually by a majority of the members.

What is the UNGA’s voting procedure?

The United Nations General Assembly, with a two-thirds majority of members present and voting, may suspend a member of the Council’s membership privileges if such a member commits grave and systematic abuses of human rights. Abstentions are not counted, and the resolution must be carried by a two-thirds majority of yes/no votes.

What is the resolution that is being proposed?

The draught resolution titled “Suspension of the Russian Federation’s Human Rights Council Membership Rights” takes note of the Human Rights Council resolution of March 4, 2022, in particular its grave concern over reports of Russia’s gross and systematic violations and abuses of human rights and violations of international humanitarian law committed during its aggression against Ukraine.

The draught resolution expresses extreme concern over Ukraine’s continued human rights and humanitarian situation, especially in light of allegations of Russian breaches and abuses of human rights and international humanitarian law, including severe and systematic violations and abuses of human rights.

This statement recognizes that UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet both made very strong statements of concern in their statements.

Do you have any co-sponsors?

According to Paulina Kubiak Greer, spokesperson for General Assembly President Abdulla Shahid, the draught resolution was co-sponsored by Ukraine, Antigua and Barbuda, Canada, Colombia, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Georgia, Germany, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liberia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Poland, the Republic of Moldova, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Earlier this week in Bucharest, Romania’s capital, US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield told reporters that Washington would pursue Russia’s suspension from the UN Human Rights Council in close collaboration with Ukraine, European nations, and other UN allies.

She had said that Russia should not have an authoritative position in that council, and we should not enable Russia to exploit its membership in the council as a propaganda instrument to imply a real concern for human rights.

 

In reality, we receive devastating news every day, including yesterday, about how little they care about human rights. Russia’s Human Rights Council membership is a charade. It erodes the Council’s and the UN’s broader credibility. And that is patently false. This is why she believes it is past time for the United Nations General Assembly to suspend them.

What has India’s track record been so far?

At least 11 times since January on procedural votes and draft resolutions criticising Russia’s aggression against Ukraine in the UN Security Council, General Assembly, and Human Rights Council.

What has India stated so far, particularly in relation to the Bucha killings?

New Delhi strongly denounced on Tuesday claims that civilians were killed in the Ukrainian city of Bucha. The Indian government backed the call for an impartial investigation and said that when innocent lives are at risk, diplomacy is the only viable option.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Wednesday that India is “very concerned” about reports that civilians have been killed in Bucha and that India is “very concerned.”

“We vehemently condemn the atrocities committed there. “This is a grave subject, and we support the request for an impartial inquiry,” he stated in response to a debate in Parliament over Ukraine’s predicament.

India, Jaishankar said, promotes dialogue between Ukraine and Russia, especially at the level of their presidents, and he emphasized that New Delhi would be “happy to participate” in this regard. India’s plan, he said, would be to encourage discussion so that the problem could be solved.

Since the Council last reviewed Ukraine, the situation has not improved much. The security situation in Ukraine has deteriorated, as have the humanitarian consequences, India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Ambassador T S Tirumurti, told a United Nations Security Council meeting on Ukraine on Tuesday, which was addressed for the first time by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

Thus, is a precedent for suspension established?

Russia’s current term as a Council member expires in December 2023. The only time a member state has been suspended from the Geneva-based Human Rights Council was in Libya in 2011, when the General Assembly adopted a resolution expressing grave concern about the human rights situation in the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya following Muammar Al-Violent Gaddafi’s crackdown on anti-government protests.

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