Key votes at the 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council and new composition in 2023
Map of the Month 10/2022
During the 51st session of the UN Human Rights Council, among others two texts on two UN Security Council members - China and Russia - were put to the vote. Following the release of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights' report on the situation in the Xinjiang Autonomous Region on 31 August, the US, together with Canada, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Sweden and the UK, tabled a draft decision to debate the issue at the next session under agenda item 2. After China called for a vote, the text was rejected with 19 votes against, 17 in favour and 11 abstentions. On the other hand, a resolution was adopted with 17 votes in favour, 6 against and 24 abstentions, which, among other things, decides to establish a Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in Russia. This is the first time that such a mechanism will be established for a member of the UN Security Council. Furthermore, the mandates of the Fact-Finding Mission on Venezuela, the International Commission of Experts on Human Rights in Ethiopia and the Special Rapporteurs on Afghanistan were extended. In addition, 12 new members were elected and two current members were re-elected (Germany and Sudan) to serve as members of the Council starting from 1 January, 2023.