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Special> Video> Latest
UPDATED: November 14, 2013
China Joins in UN Human Rights Council

China, France, Saudi Arabia, the United Kingdom and ten other countries have been elected to the United Nations' (UN) Human Rights Council. The Geneva-based watchdog adopts resolutions censuring human rights abuses and sends monitors to countries around the world.

The UN General Assembly approved 14 new members to the Human Rights Council on November 12. Seats are apportioned by region, and many countries ran virtually unopposed in their blocs. South Sudan and Uruguay were the only two candidates not to win seats.

While the results were somewhat pre-ordained, the balloting was nonetheless controversial, particularly among human rights groups. Representative of Human Rights Watch opposed the election of China, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Vietnam, and Algeria -- saying those countries have not permitted UN investigators to check on alleged human rights violations.

For its part, China's official nomination paperwork says the country has made consistent efforts for the promotion and protection of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the Chinese people and that China "earnestly fulfills its obligations under relevant international human rights treaties."

Saudi Arabia had expected some resistance to its candidacy after withdrawing from a seat on the UN Security Council earlier this fall. Jordan had been running in the same regional bloc, but withdrew and is now considered a top contender for Saudi Arabia's vacated Security Council seat. A bit of diplomatic musical chairs, it seems.

Members to the body serve three-year rotating terms and no member is permitted to serve more than two consecutive terms.

(CNTV.cn November 13, 2013)


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