UN Watch reported that Syria has declared its candidacy for a seat on the council, the U.N.'s flagship human-rights body, next year. The General Assembly will vote on whether to elect Syria to the council, which is responsible for "the promotion and protection of all human rights around the globe."
Because Syria is running as part of U.N.'s 53-country Asian regional group, it is virtually assured of victory. Under the U.N. system, regional groups orchestrate uncontested elections to choose representatives to sit on the rights council.
"That's how non-democracies like China, Cuba, Saudi Arabia and China won their current seats, and how Pakistan and Venezuela are about to do the same," according to UN Watch.
Damascus declared its desire to join the Human Rights Council last year. But after Western democracies pressed the Asian bloc not to nominate that country, an 11th-hour agreement was announced in May 2011 that Kuwait would replace Syria. This year, the United States and the European Union have taken the unprecedented step of asking the council to declare in advance that Syria will be disqualified from joining.
At first blush, it may seem unthinkable that Damascus could be considered for a position on the Human Rights Council given Assad's latest atrocities. But on Thursday, the council adopted a resolution cosponsored by Syria which called for a new U.N. declaration promoting a "right to resist and oppose oppressive colonial, foreign occupation" – effectively providing a measure of legitimacy to the justification for jihad advanced by terrorist organizations like al-Qaida, Hizballah, and Hamas.
The measure passed by a 34-1 vote (with only the United States in opposition) and 12 abstentions.
Last year, Syria was unanimously elected to a pair of human-rights committees that were part of the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
The United States and Great Britain tried to prevent UNESCO from taking this step. But even though the Assad government had been suspended from the Arab League, the same nations' UNESCO ambassadors in Paris ran interference for Damascus, which today remains a full member of the agency's committees dealing with human-rights organizations and judging human-rights complaints.
While going soft on Assad, U.N. "human-rights" advocates remain tough as ever on Israel. At a meeting last Monday in Geneva, U.N. Special Rapporteur Richard Falk, a 9/11 conspiracy theorist, blamed Israel for provoking violence and violating human rights in the "Palestinian territories occupied since 1967." Twenty states and six nongovernmental organizations denounced Israel and praised Falk, including paragons of human rights like Iran, Syria, Sudan, Saudi Arabia and Cuba. Only one party – UN Watch – defended the Jewish state.Read more here.