UNHRC asked to look at Israel’s human rights record
- Member states of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation are calling on the UN Human Rights Council to set up a permanent commission to report on human rights violations in Israel, Gaza, and the West Bank.
- If passed, it would mark an unprecedented level of scrutiny authorised by the UN’s top human rights body.
- The Council was created by the United Nations General Assembly in 2006.
- It replaced the former United Nations Commission on Human Rights.
- The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) serves as the Secretariat of the Human Rights Council.
- OHCHR is headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland.
- The UNHRC has 47 members serving at any time with elections held to fill up seats every year, based on allocations to regions across the world to ensure geographical representation.
- Each elected member serves for a term of three years.
- Countries are disallowed from occupying a seat for more than two consecutive terms.
- The Council’s Membership is based on equitable geographical distribution. Seats are distributed as follows:
|African States||13 seats|
|Asia-Pacific States||13 seats|
|Latin American and Caribbean States||8 seats|
|Western European and other States||7 seats|
|Eastern European States||6 seats|
- The UNHRC passes non-binding resolutions on human rights issues through a periodic review of all 193 UN member states called the Universal Periodic Review (UPR).
- It oversees the expert investigation of violations in specific countries (Special Procedures).