Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2012-02-15-Speech-3-484-000"

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"Mr President, Parliament’s resolution on the 19th session of the UN Human Rights Council represents a very good opportunity to highlight the huge importance of this body. It is the only UN forum in which breaches of human rights in the relevant countries can be directly addressed. The results of the EU’s investigation into the council’s working methods were highly constructive and the EU supports the independence of the Office of the High Commissioner and the Special Rapporteurs. It is highly regrettable that Baroness Ashton cannot take part in this session of the Human Rights Council. This could be interpreted as playing down the importance of human rights policy in foreign relations. However, one very positive feature is the generous funding given by the European Union to support the work of the UN human rights bodies. The Commission should consider increasing the amount of money in future, because the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights has many new responsibilities as a result of the events of the Arab Spring. In our resolution, we have devoted a separate chapter to breaches of human rights in the Arab Spring countries. It lists a number of specific requirements which the EU should support. I would like to highlight just two of them. One is the situation in Yemen, where it is important that the serious breaches of human rights, which, in some cases, amount to war crimes, are stopped. There must be no immunity from prosecution for people in positions of political responsibility. The second country is Algeria. It is currently undergoing the process of Universal Periodic Review in the Human Rights Council for the second time. The fate of the thousands of people who have disappeared and of their families urgently needs to be addressed. The Human Rights Council can deal directly with breaches of human rights in individual countries and you, Mr Søvndal, have mentioned that you have made use of last year’s momentum to adopt even more specific resolutions. You have my full support. The requirements in the report by the Special Rapporteur on Iran must be implemented. We need to see concrete results in North Korea. Although there have been some changes for the better in Myanmar/Burma, international attention must remain focused on the human rights situation in this country. We need to implement the results of the fact-finding mission to Gaza and those responsible for the breach of international law must be held to account. In addition, the findings of the investigation commission on Côte d’Ivoire must be put into effect and I am pleased that you have already mentioned this in your speech. We must ensure that the report by the UN Secretary General’s panel of experts on Sri Lanka is taken seriously and implemented."@en1

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