Friday, March 23, 2012

UNHRC throws out Russia proposal on Libya detentions

The UN Human Rights Council on Friday adopted a resolution urging Libya's new rulers to probe all alleged abuses, but threw out a Russian proposal calling for a halt to arbitrary detentions.

The council also rejected an amendment tabled by the Ugandans, who sought to include a reference to "express deep concern about the deliberate killings ... of persons of Sub-Saharan origins."

The amendments tabled by the two delegations hours before the council session was due to close sparked frantic negotiations among ambassadors.

Russia said its proposal would have made the resolution backed by Western states "more balanced."

"It calls upon the Transitional Government of Libya to address the cases of arbitrary detention, including of foreign nationals, and to release them immediately or to bring them to fair trial," said Russia.

Uganda meanwhile said its amendment was tabled as it feared that "impunity and a deliberate targeting of a particular ethnic group would continue."

"We hope that this amendment will in some nature treat all situations of abuse with equal measure," said the Ugandan envoy.

However, the United States and Italy both said they could not support the proposals as they came too late.

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