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UN rights council votes to review Israel rights record at every session

[JURIST] The new Human Rights Council of the United Nations [official website] voted Friday to review alleged human rights [JURIST news archive] abuses by Israel [JURIST news archive] in all future council sessions, a move which was protested by both Israel and the US as unfair. Islamic countries lobbied in favor of the resolution, which passed 29-12, while Israel said the measure simply perpetuated the former Human Rights Commission's bad habits of unfairly criticizing and singling out Israel. The council also voted to hold a special session on human rights in Palestine [UNOG press release] and other Arab territories next week. AP has more.

Friday marked the end of the Council's inaugural session [JURIST report] in Geneva; the host Swiss delegation called the meeting a great success, but said the body faced a major challenge in its regular human rights reviews of all 191 UN member states. Jean Daniel Vigny, a member of Switzerland's Permanent Mission to the UN Office and Other International Organizations in Geneva [official website], said the UN body had to treat all nations equally in their review of human rights abuses and complete reviews within the mandated 3-year period. The Swiss delegates are organizing a conference for late August where member states will discuss formal procedures for the human rights reviews. Swissinfo has more.

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