April 7, 2007Foreign Affairs

If you leave human rights to the UN

…you might have none left

This is an archived blog post from The Acorn.

The United Nations used to have a Human Rights Committee, filled with the likes of Saudi Arabia, China, Cuba and Pakistan, that proved to be such an embarrassment that it was replaced with a Human Rights Council, filled with the likes of Saudi Arabia, China, Cuba and Pakistan. At the time of its inception, The Acorn had argued that it is best for India to stay out of the new farce in New York, unless it was prepared to drive an uncompromising agenda on international human rights.

Unfortunately, it did neither.

Now, the UN Human Rights Council has passed a resolution that condemns the defamation of religion, acceding to a demand made by the Organisation of Islamic Conference—and tabled by Pakistan—since the very beginning. According to the United Nations, it might now be a violation of human rights to defame any religion. Limitations on the freedom of expression, on the other hand, might not.

Proof, for those who require it, that such precious things as fundamental rights and freedoms are best protected by national constitutions rather than international resolutions. India, Japan, Germany, Britain and the few other democracies that are on the council would do well to reconsider what exactly they hope to achieve by hanging in there. Their presence gives the council an appearance of legitimacy that it does not deserve.

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