Map of the Month

The KAS Map of the Month

Key votes and joint statements at the 50th UN Human Rights Council

Map of the Month 07/2022

The 50th UN Human Rights Council convened in Geneva from 13 June to 8 July. The impact of the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine was one of the main topics in the debates. Amongst others, the EU delivered a joint statement on food security. The increasing restrictions and repression of human rights and fundamental freedoms in Russia, especially since Russia’s repeated illegal invasion of Ukraine were also addressed. The situation in China was in focus as well and the prompt release of the report on Xinjiang was demanded. In addition, gender was one of the central issues. An urgent debate on women's rights in Afghanistan was held and numerous resolutions were adopted, including one on the extension of the mandate of the independent expert on protection against violence and discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity. The mandate of the Special Rapporteur on Belarus was also extended.

Joint Statements on human rights situation in China at the 50th UN Human Rights Council

Map of the Month 06/2022

At the beginning of the 50th UN Human Rights Council, the Netherlands delivered a cross-regional joint statement (JST) on behalf of 46 other states in which they expressed their grave concern about the human rights situation in China, particularly in Xinjiang. This comes in the context of the publication of the Xinjiang Police Files and the recent visit of UN High Commissioner Bachelet to China. Cuba on the other hand opposed any politicisation, double standards or interference in China's internal affairs in the name of 69 states.

Proposals about the WTO Working Programme on Electronic Commerce (incl. "E-Commerce Moratorium")

Map of the Month 06/2022

The Work Programme on Electronic Commerce was adopted at the second WTO Ministerial Conference in 1998. Members agreed not to impose tariffs on electronic transmissions for the time being ("E-Commerce Moratorium"). This exemption has been extended at all subsequent WTO Ministerial Conferences so far. An extension of the Moratorium during the 12th Ministerial Conference cannot be taken for granted.

Resolutions on the health emergency in Ukraine at the 75th World Health Assembly

Map of the Month 05/2022

During the 75th World Health Assembly Ukraine and Russia introduced resolutions on 23 and 24 May that addressed the health emergency in Ukraine and in refugee-hosting countries. While the Ukrainian resolution, among other demands, clearly condemns the aggressor and calls on Russia to stop military attacks on health facilities, the Russian resolution makes no reference to the instigator of the war and the attacks on health infrastructure. Instead, it refers to the humanitarian situation “in and around Ukraine” blurring lines about the victims of the war of aggression.

34. Special Session of UN Human Rights Council on Ukraine

Map of the Month 05/2022

On 12 May, the 34th Special Session of the UN Human Rights Council on the deteriorating human rights situation in Ukraine stemming from the Russian aggression took place in Geneva. Ukraine had requested the session and also submitted a draft resolution. It was adopted with only China and Eritrea voting against. It strengthens the mandate of the Commission of Inquiry. Many diplomats also expressed concern about the global impact of the war on food and energy security. Russia boycotted the meeting.

Key votes at the 49th UN Human Rights Council and Suspension of Russian membership

Map of the Month 04/2022

The 49th UN Human Rights Council convened in Geneva from February 28 to April 1, 2022. It was the longest session in the Council's history and a particular test for multilateral diplomacy, not only because of the situation in Ukraine. In addition to the emergency session and the establishment of a Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine, there were other important votes, including on the extension of the mandate of the UN High Commissioner to further investigate human rights violations in Belarus or the establishment of a group of human rights experts on Nicaragua. Numerous joint statements were delivered, including on the human rights situation in Russia and in Yemen. Meanwhile, China, once again spoke out in favor of a state-centered "human rights dialogue" and a modified role for the Office of the UN High Commissioner in order to avoid criticism and scrutiny.

Composition of the Governing Body of the International Labour Organization (ILO) from 2021-2024

Map of the Month 03/2022

On 25 March 2022, the Governing Body, the executive organ of the ILO, will elect the new ILO Director-General. The Governing Body is composed of 56 regular members (28 Governments, 14 Employers members, and 14 Workers members). Ten of the regular government seats are permanently held by countries of major industrial importance, including Germany, China, the USA, and Russia. The other Government members are elected by the Conference every three years (the last elections were held in June 2014). The Employer and Worker members are elected in their individual capacity. There are also 66 deputy members (28 governments, 19 employers, and 19 workers), which are not shown on this map. This map depicts the regular members and their respective functions.

Central votes and positioning on Russian aggression against Ukraine

Map of the Month 03/2022

The Russian aggression against Ukraine was strongly condemned in numerous UN bodies. In the course of the past week, the pressure on the Russian Federation increased visibly. At the beginning of the week, the UN Human Rights Council had voted on holding an urgent debate. Five member states had spoken out against it. Towards the end of the week, an independent commission of enquiry on the situation in Ukraine was set up with only Eritrea voting alongside Russia against it. The text of the resolution also notes the decision by the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) to proceed with opening an investigation into the situation in Ukraine, as rapidly as possible. 39 states had so far officially referred the situation in Ukraine to the ICC. The UN General Assembly in New York also strongly condemned the Russian invasion in a historic "Uniting for Peace" resolution.

About this series

The "Map of the Month", a new series of the Multilateral Dialogue Geneva of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, uses maps to illustrate global trends and the role of Germany and Europe in the world on a monthly basis.

Dr. Olaf Wientzek

Olaf Wientzek bild

Director of the Multilateral Dialogue Geneva

olaf.wientzek@kas.de +41 22 748 70 70