Sunday, August 26, 2012

The UN's Clownish "Human Rights" Body Has a "Special Rapporteur" for Iran? Who Knew?

And here I thought they only had special rapporteurs to, um, rapporteur on the antics of hated Zionists. Silly moi. Not that the S.R. for Iran has actually made any headway since his appointment. That said, don't expect the UN's head honcho, currently attending the Ayatollah's NAM confab, to comment on the lack of progress:
Having made this decision [to attend NAM], the secretary general should take the opportunity while in Iran to press the Iranian government to permit the U.N. special rapporteur for human rights entry into the country to do his investigative work. The U.N. Human Rights Council created the Office of Special Rapporteur for Human Rights in Iran in March 2011, the first appointment of an investigator with a mandate to monitor a specific country since the council was created in 2006 to replace the 60-year-old U.N. Human Rights Commission. The Iranian government lobbied vociferously against the creation of the special rapporteur, whose mandate represents a significant diplomatic achievement for the Obama administration. It is also an important vindication of the administration’s decision to join the Human Rights Council, reversing the policy of the George W. Bush administration, which had shunned the council.

Since being elected as the special rapporteur, Ahmed Shaheed, a former Maldivian foreign minister, has produced two important reports—an interim report in September 2011 and one at the completion of his first term in March 2012, after which Shaheed’s mandate was extended—featuring extensive testimony cataloguing “allegations that produce a striking pattern of violations of fundamental human rights.” This marks the first time any U.N. agency has documented abuses in Iran in this way. While the Iranian government’s continuing refusal to allow Shaheed entry into the country has made his work more difficult, Iranian human rights activists say his impact has been considerable.

According to Hadi Ghaemi, executive director of the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran, there are a number of areas in which the creation of the special rapporteur has made a difference. “First, the appointment has activated a U.N. mechanism, which put the Iranian government on notice that it’s being watched,” he explains. “We believe that this has had a preventative impact, putting a break [on potential abuses], preventing things from getting too out of hand. It has also created an address for victims of abuses to register grievances.” Indeed, immediately after his appointment, hundreds of Iranians contacted Shaheed to submit their testimonies.

The work of the special rapporteur also had an impact on Iranian foreign policy, seriously complicating Iran’s diplomacy. “We know firsthand that as a result of the creation of the monitor, relations between Iran and Brazil have cooled off quite a lot,” Ghaemi says. With regard to the Iranian domestic front, the existence of a special rapporteur has helped to keep human rights on the agenda. “We’ve even seen references to this in [Iran’s] Parliament,” Ghaemi says. “The human rights issue has become part of the discourse within Iran.”...
Big whoop. Are the mullahs any less maniacal? Is the Ayatollah any less intent on building nukes and imposing his will on the world? If you answered "yes" to either question, you, too, likely see the American presence on this odious body as an "important vindication" of Obama's policies--you silly goose.

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