New Report on UN reform launched at Chatham House

The Conservative Party Human Rights Commission will launch a new report on UN reform on 19 March at Chatham House. A panel chaired by Rosemary Righter from The Times and including the Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister responsible for human rights, David Lidington MP, Conservative Party Human Rights Commission Chairman Stephen Crabb MP, a representative of Chatham House and a representative of a major human rights NGO will discuss the report’s recommendations at the event, to be held from 2.30-3.30pm.

The report, Globalising Human Rights: A Conservative Agenda for UN Reform, has been submitted to the Shadow Foreign Secretary William Hague MP. It analyses the performance of the UN Human Rights Council and calls for a “culture change” within the UN. Countries belonging to the Human Rights Council should be required to address their own human rights records before election, a Democracy Caucus should be established within the UN to balance other influential blocks, and “in the most extreme cases, the threat of expulsion – or suspension – can be used as leverage more effectively than it is now”.

The report also recommends strengthening the Community of Democracies as an alternative to the UN. The Commission concludes: “While the Conservative Party Human Rights Commission would like to see reform of UN institutions and procedures, we also believe that alternatives to the UN should be developed so that, where the UN and its member states cannot or will not act, there are alternative means of addressing human rights at a multilateral level. This will also serve to encourage the UN to go further in promoting basic human rights and freedoms.”