May 17, 2007

Country elected to UN Human Rights Council

Angola was elected member of the United Nations Human Rights Council, with 172 votes, for the 2007-2010 period. Angola's bid for that organ was initially supported by the African countries' ambassadors in New York, commonly called "African Group", a gesture that gave the Angolan diplomacy reassurance that there would be success. Angola was candidate for Southern Africa, which so far was represented in that UN organ by Botswana and South Africa. South Africa's term ends 2007, but the authorities of that country had presented a new candidacy to the mentioned organ. The place of Southern Africa in that organ was disputed by Angola, South Africa and Madagascar. There were also bids for other continental regions, namely candidatures from Egypt, Denmark, Italy, The Netherlands, Slovenia, Bolivia, India, Indonesia, Nicaragua, Philippines, Belarus, and Qatar.
The UN Human Rights Council is made up of a total of 47 members, and it is tasked with promoting the universal respect and defence of human rights and fundamental freedoms for all, with justice and equity. In the year 2006, in the framework of the reforms in the United Nations, the Human Rights Council replaced the former Human Rights Commission, which was discredited for excessive politicisation of that organ. (Angola Press Agency, Luanda)

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