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EU at the UN

The EU's commitment to effective multilateralism, with the UN at its core, is a central element of its external action. As a UN observer with enhanced status, the EU delegation coordinates with its 28 Member States to speak with one voice. The EU also works closely with the UN secretariat and its agencies, funds & programmes, partnering on a range of global issues and challenges.

Mr Chairperson,

I take the floor on behalf of the European Union in explanation of position after the adoption of draft resolution L. 61* entitled Report of the Human Rights Council.

On the occasion of the adoption of a corresponding resolution last year, the EU expressed its concerns as regards both principle and process relating to this initiative. The EU still has those same concerns with regard to the resolution we have just adopted.

On 30 October, the Report of the Human Rights Council was considered in the plenary of the General Assembly. This is in the view of the European Union the proper place to consider the report of the human rights council. The EU expressed its views regarding the report of the human rights council at that time.

At the beginning of the 64th session, the General Assembly decided to also allocate the item entitled Human Rights Council Report to the Third Committee for the purpose of allowing the Third Committee to consider and take action on any recommendations made to the General Assembly by the Council. Although The EU would have preferred that the Human Rights Council Report be allocated to the GA Plenary only, it went along with this compromise, respecting the desire of other delegations to consider the specific recommendations of the Council in the Third Committee.

One of the two recommendations made to the General Assembly this year has been the subject of a separate resolution in the Committee, presented by the delegation of Brazil. The EU believes that this is the better way to consider recommendations of the Council, since it allows all UN Member States to consider each recommendation on its merits. In the view of the EU, there is no need for a generic resolution which notes the report and acknowledges the recommendations of the Human Rights Council. Such a resolution carries no added value, and is likely to create difficulties for Member States, who may take very different positions with regard to the various recommendations of the Council. Moreover, by asking the Committee to take note of the report of the Human Rights Council, the resolution does not respect the compromise when it comes to the consideration of the report.

The main sponsors of the resolution tabled their proposal during the very last days of the work of the Third Committee. No informals were held. The main sponsors did not share their draft with other delegations, or allow time for delegations to consider the final text of the draft before action.

Given that the contents of this resolution is of interest and relevance to all delegations, the EU finds this way of proceeding unfortunate.

Despite the above, and without prejudice to similar initiatives in the future, the EU joined consensus on L. 61*.


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