Cuba Organizing Rogue Speakers’ List of Hardliners in Bid to Ambush U.S. at Friday’s U.N. Review

UN Watch Backgrounder on U.N.’s 1st UPR Review of America’s Human Rights Record

The U.S. is trying to stop the Cuban delegation from organizing the list of countries at the Human Rights Council that will review America’s human rights record on Friday.

“We are concerned that Iran, Cuba, Venezuela and other non-democracies are planning to hijack the session to score propaganda points and drum up anti-American sentiment worldwide,” said Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, a Geneva-based non-governmental monitoring group. “We applaud the U.S. for setting a model for openness in its approach to the UN review, and it’s tragic that many states are seeking to misuse and politicize the process.”

Diplomats in Geneva report that Cuba took the lead last week in circulating an advance sign-up sheet so that critics of Washington dominate the two hours reserved for country statements on America’s record. The list was challenged last week at the Human Rights Council chamber but diplomats confirm it is still valid.

Iranian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast announced this week that Tehran will take the floor to slam the US for alleged violations.

In previous reviews, country delegates have lined up all night to obtain one of the limited speaking slots.

UN Watch research, “Mutual Praise Society” of 2009, shows that the UN process which will review the U.S. record has too often been misused.

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