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Home>> Articles

Out with the US, In with Sudan in Human Rights.
By Radouane El Jaouhari

In a recent vote at the UN, the over confidant USA was thrown off the human rights commission. A vote involving 53 countries ended up with the US losing its seat and the country of Sudan joining the commission... Sure it sounds more like an opening of a science fiction book, but this is exactly what happened just a few weeks ago in Geneva.

It's true, at times, the US has not always been a champion when it comes to human rights, but to replace it with Sudan! A country where slavery still exists, young girls are circumcised in the name of religion, must catch our attention and draw our curiosity to asking: Why the once defender of Human rights and the policeman of the world was pushed away and asked to leave. If this reflects anything, it would be anger that some countries around the world, especially the EU, feel towards the United States. May be through this vote, they found a way condemn the US because of its withdrawal and refusal to sign the Kyoto agreement? Which controls the production of CO2 and other gases emissions leading to global warming, this decision elicited strong criticisms worldwide, and helped the US advance another step toward isolation from the world.

Or is it Timothy Mcveigh! The bomber of the Oklahoma federal building, and who has a date with death with lethal injection. His case has attracted attention from around the world, and one more time put democracy in the US under the spotlight. Many countries in the world have abolished Capital Punishment. The EU has made it a primary condition for any country wanting to join the Union, one of their members, England, had to drop it too before it became a member. Now with Timothy Mcveigh, the world has tuned in to his case, and to the death penalty in the US.

Another thought could lead us to believe that the countries that voted the US off in favor of Sudan are just playing politics. They probably did that in an attempt to strengthen their ties with this country, which just two years ago was an oil importer, but now it is an exporter.

The Irony in all this is that the government of Sudan has ignored all UN and International humanitarian laws, and has extensively attacked its civilians living around the oil rich area. Terrorizing their villages, destroying their harvests, and burning their homes to make way for oil exploitation. Despite all of that, Sudan triumphed at the United Nations Human Rights Commission. With the US out of an important body of the UN, Is it a first step towards isolation in a global era? Is it their way of putting pressure on the US to urge a reconsideration of Kyoto, and I wonder how President Bush and Secretary of State Collin Powel are reacting to this, and whether they are concerned about the possibility of losing more seats in the future?

Radouane El Jaouhari

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