New UN rights chief addresses US immigration policies among global concerns News
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New UN rights chief addresses US immigration policies among global concerns

The new UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet Jeria [official profile] voiced concern Monday about abuses worldwide, specifically addressing the US’ separation of migrant families.

In an opening statement [press release] to the 39th session of the Human Rights Council [official website], Bachelet stated that while the US has halted its “unconscionable practice” of separating immigrant children from their families, the US has failed to redress victimized families:

Over 500 migrant children taken away from their parents by US officials have still not been returned to their families. Of further concern is the announcement last week that the government would not longer abide by a curt settlement limiting detention of children to 20 days.

The High Commissioner further addressed her disappointment in the US for refusing to sign the Global Compact [official website], which hopes to set up humane reception of all people arrive at foreign borders with respect to their human rights:

The Office is eager to assist States to realize these commitments by building national capacity–including, for example, by training border guards and law enforcement personnel who work in border areas to uphold and respect the human rights of all, and by providing practical guidance for national implementation plans.

While Bachelet touched on a number of issues throughout the world, her speech also included troubling human rights issues in Myanmar, noting that there is strong evidence indicating genocide, extermination and deportation of the Rohingya.

Bachelet assumed her position as the UN High Commissioner on September 1, 2018, and served as the president of Chile on two occasions (2006-2010 and 2014-2018).