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Human Rights Council Adoption of Freedom of Expression Resolution
October 6, 2009

U.S. Department of  State
October 6, 2009

The governments of the United States and the Arab Republic of Egypt take this opportunity to underscore the constructive partnership between our two nations in sponsoring the landmark resolution on the freedom of expression passed October 2 by the UN Human Rights Council. The United States and Egypt further note that this important resolution, the first of its kind in many years, enjoyed the co-sponsorship of 49 nations from around the world.

The resolution, through which consensus was restored in the Human Rights Council on an issue marred by controversy in recent years, is a reflection of an open and genuine dialogue on freedom of expression. It unequivocally supports free speech and recognizes the central role open debate plays in combating racism, xenophobia, and other forms of intolerance.

In adopting this resolution, the Human Rights Council gives clear voice to a shared international understanding of the responsibilities of governments to condemn and address hate speech and to promote respect and tolerance.