The United States is expected to confirm today that it has decided to withdraw from the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC). The move is not surprising, despite weeks of negotiations to reform the council and address its anti-Israel bias. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and UN Ambassador Nikki Haley are scheduled to address the media on the subject at 5:00 p.m. today.
The Trump administration has long been at odds with the so-called Human Rights Council over its rabid anti-Israel bias. In an article written last year for the Washington Post, Haley signaled that the United States was becoming weary with the rank hypocrisy of the council. It’s not yet clear whether the United States will completely withdraw from the group or maintain some oversight presence.
“The council must end its practice of wrongly singling out Israel for criticism,” Haley wrote. “When the council passes more than 70 resolutions against Israel, a country with a strong human rights record, and just 7 resolutions against Iran, a country with an abysmal human rights record, you know something is seriously wrong.”
The 47-member Human Rights Council began a new session on Monday in Geneva, with the head of the council taking the Trump administration to task over the policy of separating the children of illegal immigrants from their parents at the border. “The thought that any state would seek to deter parents by inflicting such abuse on children is unconscionable,” said Zeid Ra’ad al-Hussein, a Jordanian prince and the current head of the council.
Haley fired back at the council in a statement: “Once again, the United Nations shows its hypocrisy by calling out the United States while it ignores the reprehensible human rights records of several members of its own Human Rights Council.”