U.S. 'to quit United Nations human rights council'

Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson attends the Human Rights Council at the United Nations

Boris Johnson accuses UN Human Rights Council of anti-Israel bias

The Trump administration plans to announce Tuesday that it will withdraw from the United Nations Human Rights Council after criticizing the body for hypocrisy and bias against Israel. US membership on the Council legitimized an especially treacherous adversary to liberal democracies: the faux human rights victim. She highlighted the continuing presence on the UNHRC of authoritarian regimes with abysmal human rights records, along with the reluctance of other democracies to make their private misgivings about the council public. The members she said the administration no longer considers worthy of upholding human rights include Venezuela, Cuba, China and Saudi Arabia.

Politico reports that United States officials have accused the UN Human Rights Council of being biased against Israel.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and UN Ambassador Nikki Haley plan to announce the withdrawal at the State Department, two sources told Bloomberg News.

Since past year, Haley's office has also pushed the council and its chief not to publish a United Nations database of companies operating in West Bank settlements, a so-called blacklist that Israel is concerned could drive companies away and cast a further pall over its presence in the Palestinian-claimed West Bank.

Hussein pointed to criticism from the president of the American Academy of Pediatrics - who referred to the border policy as "government-sanctioned child abuse" - and noted that the U.S.is the only country not to ratify the Convention of the Rights of the Child.

Kenneth Roth, the executive director of Human Rights Watch said: 'All Trump seems to care about is defending Israel'.

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"Human rights abusers continue to serve on, and be elected to, the council", said Haley, listing U.S. grievances with the body.

Since the UNHRC was founded in 2006, the council has condemned Israel 78 times, more than all of the other countries in the world combined. During a five-year "review" to fix the Council back in 2011, the Obama administration pushed for membership reform as well. It would represent another retreat by the Trump administration from global groups and agreements whose policies it deems out of sync with American interests on trade, defense, climate change and, now, human rights.

The congresswoman argued the move was expected and came in response to the UN's criticism of the US's immigration policy on the southern border, which has seen children separated from their un-documented parents. Critics say this sends a message that the administration turns a blind eye to human rights abuses in some parts of the world.

On Monday, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein - a Jordanian - had rebuked Trump over the USA practice of splitting up migrant families detained on the Mexican border.

Under President Barack Obama the U.S. was elected for a maximum two consecutive terms on the council by the UN General Assembly.

Leaving the council would would be the latest rejection by the United States of multilateral efforts, including the Paris climate agreement and the Iran nuclear deal. "It had stained and setback the cause of human rights". She also criticized countries which shared USA values and encouraged Washington to remain, but "were unwilling to seriously challenge the status quo". The US was halfway through its three-year term on the 47-member panel.

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