On the UN Human Rights Council

The Israeli government and President Bush are right about the UN Human Rights Council: it does not fairly spread blame for human rights abuses. But the problem is not that it blames Israel too much -- it does quite an appropriate job in that. It's just that it should also focus on other countries, including members such as Egypt (local human rights organizations even campaigned against their country's membership here!) and of course places like Sudan, Iran, China, North Korea or Myanmar.

But everything it says about Israel holds, and it doesn't mean it should change its mind about regularly reviewing human rights abuses in Israel and the Palestinian Occupied Territories. I can't say I like the Council's composition much, but then again I don't like the way the Security Council works either -- and that's much, much more important.

[I bring this up because a commenter left the link above.]
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Issandr El Amrani

Issandr El Amrani is a Cairo-based writer and consultant. His reporting and commentary on the Middle East and North Africa has appeared in The Economist, London Review of Books, Financial Times, The National, The Guardian, Time and other publications. He also publishes one of the longest-running blog in the region, www.arabist.net.