The Iranian government’s appalling human rights record will not be rewarded with a seat at the United Nations Human Rights Council, according to a report by the Politico’s Laura Rozen. Iran has decided to no longer seek election to the Council in May, owing to behind the scenes efforts by Western states to block the bid. Human rights activists and organizations, including the National Iranian American Council, opposed Iran’s bid to join the UN Human Rights Council. NIAC has publicly called for a special session of the Human Rights Council to address Iran’s human rights record.
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The failure of Iran’s bid, after aggressive lobbying in New York, African capitals (Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was in Zimbabwe this week), and elsewhere, is “a big embarrassment for them,” the official continued. It “seems to be a mark of their isolation and broad distaste for their human rights record.”
Iran’s bid to be a member of the UN rights body was strongly opposed by Iranian and global human rights activists, including by Iranian Nobel Peace Prize winner Shirin Ebadi who wrote a letter opposing Tehran’s bid.