The UN Human Rights Council Contra Freedom of Expression

I’m hardly a fan of John Bolton, but his animus towards the UN Human Rights Council is something I share.  From Reuters (via normblog):

International activist groups accused the United Nations Human Rights Council on Monday of acting as a cover for Islamic and other countries aiming to restrict free speech.

The 47-nation Council passed resolutions on Friday imposing new instructions for its investigator on freedom of expression which non-governmental organisations (NGOs) said bowed too far to concerns about defamation of Islam, which have flared again with a Dutch lawmaker’s film on the Islamic holy book the Koran.

Instead of defending human rights around the world, the Paris-based Reporters Without Borders said, the U.N. body was focusing on limiting criticism of state and religious interests.

“All of the Council’s decisions are nowadays determined by the interests of Muslim countries or powerful states such as China or Russia that know how to surround themselves with allies,” the group said.

And the India and Britain-based International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU) said the Council “stands exposed as no longer capable of fulfilling its central role: the promotion and protection of human rights.”