U.S. Senator Jim Risch (R-Idaho), ranking member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, today released the following statement as the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) begins its 51st session and the UN General Assembly begins its 77th session:

“The Biden Administration was wrong to rejoin the UNHRC, which is full of human rights abusers, without securing any reforms. Unfortunately, the hypocrisy of the UNHRC is demonstrative of the larger issues at play at the UN. Despite being the largest donor to the UN, the United States receives unparalleled criticism compared to countries with serious human rights abuses and other authoritarian regimes. More special rapporteurs have visited the United States than any other country in the world.

“The UN also regularly attacks our ally Israel, promotes Chinese propaganda, and fails to meet its core mandates, such as preventing conflicts like those in Ukraine and Syria. It’s past time we hold the UN accountable and implement long-overdue reforms. Only by making significant changes will the UN be able to advance freedom and human rights around the world.”

Issues at the UN that need reform:

Attacks against the United States:

  • The United States is regularly criticized for racism through UN reports and special meetings.
  • The UN holds an annual vote against the U.S. embargo on Cuba.
  • More special rapporteurs have visited the United States than any other country in the world.

Attacks against Israel:

  • In the UNHRC, Israel is the only country in the world with its own permanent agenda item. It also has the most UN general assembly resolutions condemning it. 
  • Three UN organizations are specifically biased against Israel: the Division for Palestinian Rights of the Secretariat, the Committee to Investigate Israeli Practices in the Territories, and the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People.
  • The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East has employed members of Hamas.

Promotion of CCP talking points:

  • The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has successfully inserted language into UN resolutions and other documents to promote its “One Belt, One Road” initiative. The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs is also directly implementing Chinese One Belt, One Road policies.
  • The UN has allowed the CCP to rig elections in its favor to place Chinese nationals at the head of UN specialized agencies.
  • The WHO has allowed CCP manipulation of the organization. The CCP continues to hide the origins of COVID-19 by hindering WHO fact-finding missions, promoting the fake theory that COVID originated somewhere other than in Wuhan, China, and promoting its unreliable vaccines through COVAX.

Failure to Meet Core Mandates

  • The UN has been unable to stop conflicts such as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine or the conflict in Syria.
  • UN peacekeepers and staff engage in sexual abuse and assault which target the most vulnerable people they are supposed to be protecting.

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