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The Limitedness of the UN Human Rights Agenda - Essay Example

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This essay “The Limitedness of the UN Human Rights Agenda” tries to answer the question why the UN human rights agenda is very limited? The performance of the UN in convincing member states to respect, implement, and safeguard human rights has been severely unsatisfactory…
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The Limitedness of the UN Human Rights Agenda
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The Limitedness of the UN Human Rights Agenda

Download file to see previous pages... For more than sixty years, the UN Commission on Human Rights (CHR) embodied this disappointment. In spite of being the leading UN human rights agency tasked to evaluate human rights actions of its member states and endorsing human rights across the globe, the CHR was reduced into a medium that human rights violators exploited to hinder condemnations of their own actions (Schaefer 2009, p. 139). The poor reputation of CHR intensified over time that previous UN secretary-general Kofi Annan proclaimed, “We have reached a point at which the Commission’s declining credibility has cast a shadow on the reputation of the United Nations system as a whole, and where piecemeal reforms will not be enough” (Schaefer 2009, p. 132). Thus, in March 2006, the General Assembly made a decision to supplant the CHR with the Human Rights Council (HRC) (DeLaet 2014, p. 138).
Unfortunately, during the discussions, numerous core principles and changes that had been suggested to guarantee that the HRC would not replicate the errors of CHR was not able to acquire the needed approval in the General Assembly. In consequence, the HRC has been initially ineffective and weak in upholding and supporting basic human rights—a performance that is not likely to get better by involving the United States in the HRC in 2009 (Goodhart 2013, pp. 68-69). Sadly, even the other UN bodies have been weakened by the limitations that plagued the CHR and keep on overwhelming the HRC—the capacity of countries that do not promote or implement human rights to control or influence the system and susceptibility to political manoeuvring. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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