October 11, 2022

UN Sides With China Against the Uyghurs

The feckless organization is now more controlled by Chinese interests than concerned over verified human rights abuses.

The United Nations has never lived up to what it was originally conceived as by the ideologues. As a result, it has proven itself more often than not to be an inept club for the nations of the world to do little other than virtue signal. But increasingly the UN can’t even get that right.

The UN’s 47-member Human Rights Council has failed to pass a motion condemning China’s abusive treatment of its Uyghur minority. Back in August, the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights released a report from some of the Uyghurs who had been detained in China’s Xinjiang province. The report described “a consistent theme” of “constant hunger and, consequently, significant to severe weight loss during their periods in the facilities.” Moreover, “Almost all interviewees described either injections, pills or both being administered regularly.”

The report noted that “some also spoke of various forms of sexual violence, including some instances of rape,” and that “several women recounted being subject to invasive gynaecological examinations, including one woman who described this taking place in a group setting.” The Uyghur detainees were also forced to sing patriotic songs, kept from sleeping, and forbidden to pray.

The report called on Beijing to investigate the “allegations of torture, sexual violence, ill-treatment, forced medical treatment, as well as forced labor and reports of deaths in custody.” The UN High Commissioner also reiterated that if the reports were indeed true, it “may constitute international crimes, in particular crimes against humanity.” One of the primary reasons for the creation of the UN was to prevent the type of genocidal human rights abuses witnessed during World War II.

Yet thanks to China’s growing influence in the world body, the motion failed even to gain the floor for discussion, going down by a 19-17 vote with 11 countries abstaining entirely. The Wall Street Journal editorial board noted the hypocrisy: “If pathological optimists still think the U.N. Human Rights Council cares about human rights, they might want to note events last week.”

This despicable result serves to underscore why Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of the feckless UN Human Rights Council back in 2018. Trump’s then-ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, stated at the time, “If the Human Rights Council is going to attack countries that uphold human rights and shield countries that abuse human rights, then America should not provide it with any credibility.” The UN has now offered further evidence in support of Trump’s decision to pull out of an organization that seemingly only exists to provide a veneer of international acceptability and accountability to corrupt and abusive governments like the Chinese communists.

Finally, Joe Biden’s decision to reverse Trump’s action and reenter the Human Rights Council has now effectively blown up in his face, and Xi Jinping is likely laughing as he humiliates the U.S. and has proven that he has more clout now in the UN than does the U.S., which of course pays the lion’s share of the UN’s bills.

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