The President of the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) [official website], Remigiusz Henczel [official website], on Wednesday presented the annual report [text, PDF] to the UUN General Assembly (UNGA) [official website], claiming [press release] that the UNHRC has achieved significant progress in the last year despite inadequate financial resources. Henczel stated that the UNHRC adopted [UN News Centre report] “107 resolutions, decisions and President’s statements” within the last year, and the council’s budget has not kept pace with the increasing number of mandates stemming from these decisions. The UNHRC continued to focus on the human right violations in Syria [BBC backgrounder] and placed new focus on the protection of human rights in Belarus, North Korea, Eritrea, Iran and Myanmar [BBC backgrounders].
In September the UNHRC reported widespread human rights violations occurring in North Korea [JURIST report]. In May the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights criticized the crimes against humanity occurring in Syria [JURIST report]. The Syrian Civil War [JURIST backgrounder] has been ongoing since 2011 when opposition groups first began protesting the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad [BBC profile]. In March 2012 UN human rights experts reported to the UNHRC their concern for the human rights violations occurring in Iran and Myanmar [JURIST reports]. In June 2012 the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights condemned Eritrea [JURIST report] for its failure to address its human rights violations.