After a Syria vote at the Human Rights Council, we will have a better sense of the prospects of a renewed Syria push at the Security Council.
Kofi Annan takes to the pages of the Christian Science Monitor for Human Rights Day on December 10 to extol the value, utility and virtue of the Human Rights Council:
At some point in the near future, the ICC will issue an arrest warrant for Bashar al Assad. When that day comes, remember that it was the Human Rights Council that kicked off the series of events that lead to Assad ending up on a most-wanted list.
The lopsided vote at the Human Rights Council is significant for the fact that all four Arab members of the Council voted in favor of the resolution, while China and Russia led an opposition (and were joined by Cuba and Ecuador).
There's some grumbling among a certain cadre of UN critics that the new elections to the Human Rights Council failed to produce a majority of "free" countries to the council, as rated by Freedom House.
No real surprises here. The Syria drama ended two weeks ago when Syria dropped out of the race following Kuwait's announcement that it was running for one of the four Asia seats. Still, Syria won five votes as a write in candidate, which is kind of silly.
Ever since Syria's candidacy was announced, the United States and its allies have been pushing hard for another Asian country to effectively run against Syria.
The United States is leading a diplomatic push to block Syria from winning a seat on the Human Rights Council.
Some good news for those of us who believe that American engagement at international institutions is key to making those institutions better.