US opposes proposed UN Human Rights Council

The United States announced its opposition to the proposed new UN Human Rights Council, putting the US administration on a collision course with many UN members, key human rights groups, and a dozen Nobel peace laureates. US Ambassador John Bolton said Monday the United States will vote against the latest proposal for the council unless negotiations are reopened to address what it views as serious deficiencies, especially the chance that countries abusing human rights can become members. General Assembly President Jan Eliasson and Secretary-General Kofi Annan both indicated they want to see action on the draft resolution this week and no new negotiations. At stake is whether the compromise proposal by Eliasson to revamp the widely criticized and highly politicized Human Rights Commission with a new Human Rights Council significantly improves the UN's human rights machinery.