UN General Assembly Suspends Russia From Human Rights Council

The United Nations General Assembly has voted on a U.S. initiated resolution to suspend Russia from the U.N. Human Rights Council over reports that Russia’s soldiers have killed civilians amid recent attacks.

Linda Thomas-Greenfield, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, said that they will not allow them to continue to act with such impunity and ‘pretend that they respect human rights’.

“We believe that the members of the Russian forces committed war crimes in Ukraine, and we believe that Russia needs to be held accountable. Russia’s participation on the Human Rights Council is a farce,” Thomas-Greenfield said. 

A two-thirds majority of voting members can suspend a country from the 47-member council, with abstentions not counting in the calculation.

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine began on February 24, the U.N. Assembly has adopted two resolutions denouncing Russia with 141-5 with 35 abstentions on March 2, and 140-5 votes in favor, with 38 abstentions on March 24.

Thomas-Greenfield encouraged the 140 members who voted in favor of those two resolutions to support Russia’s suspension from the Human Rights Council.

Russia has called on an unspecified number of countries to vote ‘no’, and said that an abstention or not voting would be considered an unfriendly act and would influence bilateral relations.

After deliberation, the UN General Assembly has voted  to suspend Russia’s membership in the UN Human Rights Council 93-58-24.

Ukraine Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba confirmed the suspension and welcomed the move. 

“War criminals have no place in UN bodies aimed at protecting human rights. Grateful to all member states which supported the relevant UNGA resolution and chose the right side of history,” said Kuleba. 

Editors Note: Story “RUSSIA-HRC-SUSPENSION” updated on 07.04.2022 12:59


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