Pledges of Human Rights Council Candidates vs. the Reality 2010

According to the UN General Assembly resolution that created the Council (A/RES/60/251, adopted March 15, 2006): "when electing members of the Council, Member States shall take into account the contribution of candidates to the promotion and protection of human rights and their voluntary pledges and commitments made thereto;"


The Human Rights Pledge of Libya:
    "The Libyan Arab Jamahiriya is among the countries that fulfil their obligations regarding respect for human rights and the rule of law...The Libyan Arab Jamahiriya is fully committed to the promotion and protection of human rights principles at the national, regional and international levels, and advocates a broad concept of human rights...More than ever, the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya has paid great attention to human rights over the past 30 years...The Libyan Arab Jamahiriya pays great attention to women and children, considering that the woman is the pillar of the family...This consideration stems primarily from Islamic Sharia, which dignifies women, elevates their status and promotes their rights. "

Some of what Libya neglected to mention in its pledge:
    "Security personnel reportedly routinely tortured and abused detainees and prisoners during interrogations or as punishment... The law sanctioned corporal punishments such as amputation and flogging... Security forces had the authority to sentence without trial, particularly in cases involving the political opposition... Mu'ammar al-Qadhafi may interfere in the administration of justice by altering court judgments, replacing judges, or manipulating the appeal system... In a March 2008 speech, echoing statements in a 2007 speech in which he declared that all those who did not practice Islam were "losers," al-Qadhafi said the Christian Bible and the Jewish Torah are forgeries and the original versions mentioned the Prophet Muhammad. Al-Qadhafi stated in a 2007 interview that "Jews will go extinct because everyone hates them."... Women and girls suspected of violating moral codes were detained indefinitely without being convicted or after having served a sentence and without the right to challenge their detention before a court. They were held in "social rehabilitation" facilities, in some cases because they had been raped and then ostracized by their families. The government stated that a woman was free to leave a rehabilitation home when she reached "legal age" (18 years), consented to marriage, or was taken into the custody of a male relative. ..[A]uthorities transferred most women to these facilities against their will...Homosexual acts are a criminal offense punishable by three to five years in prison."
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The Human Rights Pledge of Angola:
    "At the international, regional and subregional levels, the Government of Angola will remain committed and will continue to support and encourage the following:
    A constructive dialogue and cooperation among members and non-members of the Council;
    Mainstreaming of human rights into the United Nations system to enhance the coordination of its activities and the effectiveness of the United Nations human rights machinery
    The engagement of non-governmental organizations as a positive and important element of dialogue in the work of the Council "
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Some of what Angola neglected to mention in its pledge:
    "[G]overnment security forces tortured, beat, and otherwise abused persons...The government arrested and harassed NGO workers... [A]uthorities arrested, harassed, and intimidated journalists... [T]he government monitored Internet chat rooms and Web sites...Domestic violence against women, including spousal abuse, was common and pervasive...Female inmates informed...that prison guards regularly raped them... [C]hild labor...remained a problem...Children engaged in...exploitive labor practices [which] included forced prostitution, involvement in the sale or transport of illegal drugs... "


The Human Rights Pledge of Malaysia:
    "Malaysia was an active member of the Commission on Human Rights (CHR) for three terms, the last being in 2005 to 2006 before the Commission was dissolved... Throughout Malaysia's tenure, we have sought to promote a constructive and pragmatic, rather than a confrontational and ideological approach to human rights issues. We firmly believe that such an approach, based on dialogue, non-politicization and technical cooperation, affords the best way of realizing the full spectrum of human rights for all. "

Some of what Malaysia neglected to mention in its pledge:
    "[T]he government restricted freedom of expression and intimidated journalists into practicing self censorship.... Religious authorities, with the consent of a Shari'a court, arrested and detained members of groups deemed "deviationist" in order to "rehabilitate deviants" and return them to the "true path of Islam."... Citizens must apply for government permission to travel to Israel... [O]fficials often engaged in corrupt practices with impunity... Violence against women remained a problem... [L]aws against sodomy and "carnal intercourse against the order of nature" exist and were enforced..."
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The Human Rights Pledge of Mauritania:
    ""Within the framework of its efforts, Mauritania has undertaken to modernize its internal array of prescriptions and to promote the broadest adherence to the main international instruments related to human rights...Civil and political rights constitute an important component in national legislation related to human rights...The right to equality between individuals and the right to non-discrimination in all its forms...has been guaranteed in all areas, political, economic, social and cultural. The enactment of...the Law of 2007 criminalizing slavery constitute substantial progress within this legislation. The right to not be detained arbitrarily, to not be subjected to torture and to be granted a fair trial ...represent the most important guarantees and protections against arbitrariness and against denial of fundamental rights...Mauritania is particularly focused on women, children and the elderly..."

Some of what Mauritania neglected to mention in its pledge:
    "[T]orture was a common practice in prisons...Torture methods included electric shocks, burnings, beatings, pulling out of hair, and sexual violence...[S]lavery-related practices and slavery itself persisted in isolated areas of the country... Slavery also occurred in urban centers where young children were retained as unpaid household servants...The government continued to prohibit proselytizing by non-Muslims and the printing and distribution of bibles and other non-Islamic religious materials... Under Shari'a homosexual acts between males are punishable by death if witnessed by four individuals...[R]ape was considered a serious problem... Families of the victim commonly reached an agreement with the rapist for monetary compensation. ..[R]ape victims were stigmatized, persecuted, and even imprisoned...[J]udges may hold the victims responsible for the rape. Domestic violence was considered a serious problem... FGM was practiced by all ethnic groups and performed on young girls, often on the seventh day after birth and almost always before the age of six months..."