US criticism of UN Human Rights Council fails to derail draft resolution

The United States on Friday renewed criticism of the UN Human Rights Council, arguing it had shown a misplaced focus on Israel while giving a free pass to countries with poor human rights records. The US opposition failed to sway the vast majority of the UN General Assembly's human rights committee, which, as expected, approved the draft resolution on the body's working rules 145-7 through a rare vote forced by Israel. The committee generally approves measures by consensus. The US listed several factors motivating its opposition to the draft, first among them was the "council's relentless focus during the year on a single country - Israel," said US Ambassador Zalmay Khalilzad. "At the same time, the council failed during the year to address serious human rights violations taking place in other countries such as Zimbabwe, DPRK (North Korea), Iran, Belarus and Cuba," he said.