The decision to pull out the UN Human Rights Council was announced on Tuesday by Nikki Haley, the U.S. Ambassador to the UN said he.
“We take this step because our commitment does not allow us to retain a part of a hypocritical and self- serving organisation that makes a mockery of human rights,” she said alongside U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Washington, DC.
Minutes later, Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, the UN High Commissioner for human rights, called that announcement by President Donald Trump’s administration “disappointing if not really surprising”.
“Given that state of human rights in today’s world, the U.S. should be stepping up, not stepping back,” he added.
The European Union said the move “risks undermining the role of the U.S. as a champion and supporters of democracy on the world stage”, while British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson called it “regrettable”.
On the other hand, Israel, a major ally of the U.S., praised Washington’s “courageous” move.
The U.S.’ announcement comes after the council voted last month to probe the killing of scores of Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip and accused Israel of excessive use of force.
Al Jazeera’s Rosiland Jordan, reporting from Washington, DC, said the U.S. exit from the 47-member Geneva-based” did not come as a shock”, as it was something that Haley had talked about almost from the moment that she became the U.S. Ambassador to the UN in early 2017.
“She was quite adamant at the time that the council held a very deep anti-Israel bias and that America was going to try to root it out: otherwise it would leave the council,” said Jordan.
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