Morocco wins UN Human Rights Council Presidency

Morocco wins UN Human Rights Council Presidency

Morocco won the Presidency of the United Nations Human Rights Council (OHCHR) following a vote in Geneva which took place on January 10, according to Telquel. 

Moroccan diplomat Omar Zniber trumped his South African counterpart Mxolisi Nkosi. The world body’s council has 47 members on it, of which 30 voted from the Moroccan representative compared to his opponent’s 17. 

Prior to the vote, South Africa attempted to stoke a degree of controversy saying that Morocco would be unfit to lead the top UN rights council, arguing its “repeated human rights violations” in the disputed Western Sahara make them unfit for the role. 

For only the second time in the council’s 17-year history, it was leaderless at the start of the year hence the need for a ballot. 

READ: Morocco’s human rights council condemns Algerian killing

Following the election Zniber told the council, “It is an honour for both the Kingdom of Morocco and for me personally to have been elected as head of this August Council for its 18th cycle – a position belonging to Africa,” , as well as stressing the high importance of the need for the human rights body. 

Spanish academic Oliver Klein said that the Moroccan triumph was positive news and told Moroccan state-owned news outfit MAP, “This election undoubtedly signifies the acknowledgment of a comprehensive process and policy that has solidified Morocco’s achievements in upholding human rights and reinforcing the principles of the rule of law. 

“This recognition underscores Morocco’s commitment to universal human rights principles and its determination to champion values of peace. “Morocco will undoubtedly fulfill its role to enhance the Council’s mission.” 

MAP/ Telquel 


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