Libya Returns To UN Human Rights Panel

Libyan Deputy UN Ambassador Ibrahim Dabbashi introduced a resolution
to the 193-nation assembly that had UN member states “welcoming the
commitments made by Libya to uphold its obligations under
international human rights law, to promote and protect human rights,
democracy and the rule of law.”

The resolution passed, but not unanimously as Dabbashi had requested.
It received 123 votes in favor and four against. There were six
abstentions and dozens of countries did not participate in the vote.

The General Assembly suspended Libya’s membership in the 47-nation
rights council on March 1 after that body, the principal U.N. rights
forum, accused Libya’s rulers at that time of “gross and systematic
violations of human rights” in their crackdown on pro-democracy

Speaking to the assembly before Friday’s vote, Dabbashi acknowledged
that there were “isolated cases” of rights abuses during the 7-month
war between forces loyal to deposed Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi and
the rebels intent on ousting him.

He reiterated that the Libya’s transitional government – the former
rebels – was investigating the circumstances surrounding the capture
and swift death of Gaddafi last month.

The government had said Gaddafi died from wounds sustained before his
capture. But video footage of a bloodied Gaddafi being dragged and
beaten by rebel soldiers while still alive led to allegations that
Gaddafi was summarily executed and international calls for an

The four countries that voted against readmitting Libya to the
Geneva-based Human Rights Council were Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua and

In a speech to the assembly, Venezuelan Ambassador Jorge Valero
condemned the NATO operation in Libya that led to Gaddafi’s overthrow
as interference in a sovereign country.

He added that “horrendous and wide-ranging violations of human rights
have taken place (in Libya, including) … the macabre assassination
of the Libya leader.”

Envoys from Ecuador, Bolivia and Nicaragua echoed Valero’s remarks,
suggesting that Libya’s National Transitional Council is not a
legitimate government. – Reuters