The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Brenda Bowser Soder,,O -202/370-3323, C - 301/906-4460

Human Rights First Welcomes US Membership on the UN Human Rights Council


In a statement released today, Human Rights First praised the United States' decision to sit as a member of the United Nation's Human Rights Council, noting the move is an important step forward in American efforts to serve as an international human rights leader.

"For too long, the United States has failed to play a constructive role at the United Nation's Human Rights Council, standing aloof from the problems and controversies that have too often plagued its work. The Obama Administration's decision to join the Council marks a fresh start for the United States and will strengthen its ability to be a world leader in human rights," said Neil Hicks of Human Rights First. "Though imperfect, the Council is the United Nation's primary forum for addressing global human rights concerns. Today's election by the General Assembly provides the U.S. with a new opportunity to make the Council into an effective mechanism for the protection and promotion of human rights around the world."

Human Rights First is a non-profit, nonpartisan international human rights organization based in New York and Washington D.C. Human Rights First believes that building respect for human rights and the rule of law will help ensure the dignity to which every individual is entitled and will stem tyranny, extremism, intolerance, and violence.