U.S. EOV on HRC Cooperation and Assistance to Ukraine

Cooperation and Assistance to Ukraine in the Field of Human Rights
Explanation of Vote by the Delegation of the United States of America
As Delivered by Ambassador Keith Harper

Human Rights Council 29th Session
Geneva,
July 3, 2015

Thank you Mr. President.

The United States applauds the Government of Ukraine for bringing forth this resolution. We also commend Ukraine for its continuous cooperation with the Office of the High Commissioner and Ukraine’s willingness to have frank conversations about the challenges it is facing.

Mr. President,

Members of this Council are fond of stressing the need for cooperative approaches to human rights challenges.  It is therefore disheartening that many of the same members who yesterday justified their votes against resolutions under Item 4 by emphasizing the need for collaboration, today have voiced opposition to this Item 10 resolution.

This resolution is a purely procedural one tabled by the concerned state. It highlights cooperation between the Ukrainian Government and an existing OHCHR Mission in the country – facts that are incontrovertible.   It seeks to build upon the OHCHR’s reporting on current human rights challenges.  After speaking with many delegations, I have not heard a single objection to the text. In short, this resolution calls for precisely the kind of cooperation and collaboration with OHCHR and this Council that many states often call for.

There is no explanation then for why some states want to say no to Ukraine when it is reaching out for support through this resolution. There is no explanation other than rank politics. It is this Council’s duty to provide support to states that are willing to ask for it. The United States will voice its support by voting YES on this draft text. We urge all other states who value the Council as an institution and who believe in the importance of promoting and protecting the human rights of all to vote YES as well.

Thank you Mr. President.