19 countries reject Uyghur debate motion at UN Human Rights Council
REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, GENEVA – The United Nations Human Rights Council on Thursday (6/10/2022) rejected a Western-led motion to hold a debate on alleged human rights abuses by the United Nations. China against muslims Uighur and other Muslims in Xinjiang. The defeat was obtained by voting 19 against, 17 for, 11 abstentions.
It was a hard blow for the West, whose draft resolution was presented by a small group, made up of Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, the United United and United States. It is co-sponsored by various countries in its 47-member council, including Turkey.
Countries tried to rally support for the debate on alleged human rights abuses against the Uyghur population in Xinjiang province by the Chinese state, only 17 members voted for.
Meanwhile, 19 members voted against, including China, Pakistan and Nepal, while 11 members abstained, including India, Brazil, Mexico, Malaysia and Ukraine.
Despite findings by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) in August that crimes against humanity may have been committed in China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region, there are no consensus among member states of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).
Activists and human rights organizations have reacted strongly to the developments within the council.
This moment becomes history United Nations Human Rights Council because only twice in 16 years has a motion been defeated. The United States (US), Canada and the United Kingdom were among the countries that filed the petition.
“It’s a disaster. It’s really disappointing,” said Dolkun Isa, president of the World Uyghur Congress, whose mother died in a camp and whose two brothers are missing.
“We will never give up but we are very disappointed with the reaction of Muslim countries,” he said.
Qatar, Indonesia, the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan rejected the motion, citing the risk of alienating China.
The motion is the first time the human rights record of China, which is a permanent member of the UN Security Council, has been on the agenda of the Human Rights Council. .
The file has been divisive and a diplomat said countries are under immense pressure from China to support it.
Countries like the UK, US and Germany have pledged to continue working towards accountability.
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