Iran slams Canada’s selective stances on human rights

IRNA – Iran’s Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the UN Eshaq Al Habib lambasted Canada’s selective stance on human rights.

Addressing the meeting of the Third Committee of UN General Assembly on Canada’s proposed resolution on the situation of human rights in Iran, he said that double-standards are an integral part of Canada’s foreign policy.

‘Ottawa has consistently and unconditionally supported Israel despite all the gross, abhorrent and systematic violations of human rights committed by that regime,’ he added.

Full text of the the Iranian envoy’s at the UN meeting is as follows:

In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

Mr. Chairman,
Year after year, time and resources of this Committee is being consumed in vain on a draft resolution that solely reflects non-objectivity and selectivity on the part of its sponsors. Canada should have realized thus far that such a pointless and futile exercise is a disservice to the human rights’ cause, a harmful measure against the UN human rights mechanisms and a disrespect to the wisdom of the people who closely monitor Canada’s selective stances on human rights situations.
In fact, observing Canada’s voting record in the United Nations is highly instructive to understand its stand on human rights. Ottawa along with very few others in the whole world have consistently and unconditionally supported Israel despite all the gross, abhorrent and systematic violations of human rights committed by that regime. This level of hypocrisy and double standard is mindboggling.

Meanwhile, credible international sources expose many cases of non-compliance by Canada with its international human rights obligations, which resulted in systematic discriminatory policies and treatments against indigenous people, migrants and minorities. While police brutality, forced disappearances and murder of the indigenous people are well documented, indigenous women and girls continue to suffer from the institutionalized discrimination and violence.

Mr. Chairman,

Inconsistency, double standard and discriminatory approaches are integral to the foreign policy of countries like Canada. For these self-proclaimed champions of human rights there are two ways of approaching to human rights issues. It totally depends on who has to be blamed. The same pattern of hypocrisy, with very dangerous ramifications at the global level, could also be noticed when it comes to their fight against terrorism. They conveniently employ or actively support good terrorists, who commit blatant violation of human rights to destabilize the unfavorable or what they sinisterly call “rouge states”. At the same time, they recklessly label fighting against foreign occupation and aggression as terrorism. For countries like Canada and the United States respect for human rights, promotion of democracy and fighting against terrorism are all ideological mystification, part and parcel of the system of domination. It is, however, insulting that they expect others to buy their entrenched hypocrisy as sincere and benevolent exercises.

Some of the countries who adamantly push for this biased resolution are even foolhardy enough to claim that their foreign policy is founded in fundamental freedoms. It is sarcastically correct! They recognize for themselves the freedom to exploit. It is true when they use their freedom to rob other countries’ national resources, their freedom to install military dictatorships in our countries and to crash our national democratic dreams, their freedom to institutionalize torture, to promote hate and racism, to legitimize foreign occupation, to conduct preemptive attacks, to exercise regime change policies, to impose coercive unilateral measures and to uproot indigenous populations. Perhaps, before lecturing others on human rights, first and foremost, they should respond to the question that, how millions of people killed by their policies may think about human rights.

Mr. Chairman,

In its very long history, Iran has never practiced slavery; Iran has never colonized other nations; Iran never uprooted indigenous communities, and has never advocated for racial supremacy. It is, therefore, absurd that few well-known countries who have all these dark practices and even worse in their very short history find the audacity to abuse the noble cause of human rights in order to advance their short-sighted political interests.

The persistence of Canada to continue its worn out policy of confrontation in place of cooperation is regrettable. Canada insists on this futile resolution notwithstanding the fact that Israel, the last apartheid regime of the world, is one of its constant co-sponsors. Canada is so interested in the resolution that even decided not to wait for the relevant report of the Secretary-General to become available. Canada wants this biased resolution regardless of numerous calls by Iran for respectful dialogue. Such insistence on politicization and polarization of human rights is difficult to comprehend.

Mr. Chairman,

Iran’s commitment to promotion and protection of human rights is genuine and deeply rooted in the country’s culture and history. Iran derives its legitimacy and security from the voice and vote of its people. This is an inherent characteristic of our political system. Accordingly, the Government views the protection of and respect for all human rights of its citizens as indispensable in ensuring its national security, prosperity and longevity.

With such conviction, during the last four decades, the people’s voice expressed peacefully and meaningfully through ballot boxes, has constantly decided the country’s destiny. The people of Iran once again freely and peacefully decided on their future in May 2017 in the democratically held twelfth Presidential elections. The re-election and victory of President Rouhani further reinforced the genuine willingness of Iranians to both promote and protect human rights at home and expand constructive dialogue abroad. Iranians’ attachment to democracy and human rights is incontestable. We have proved that human rights is our own priority, it is part and parcel of our national security priority. Similar to any other country, deficiencies may exist and we are determined to address them, however, it is not for those who traditionally, historically and practically supported colonialism, slavery, racism and apartheid to lecture Iranians on human rights.

Mr. Chairman,

The situation of human rights in Iran by no means is a special situation to warrant a special mandate. Iran’s cooperation with human rights mechanisms and within the Human Rights Council is far beyond documentation. Iran has registered high ratio of visits by the Special Mandate Holders in the region, six of whom visited the country since 2003 and three were invited to visit the country in the coming months. Additionally, the visit of the High Commissioner for Human Rights is pending on administrative arrangements. Iran has also regularly and consistently responded to the communications from the Special Mandate Holders of the Human Rights Council. Iran accepted about 65% of received recommendations during second cycle of review, while voluntarily submitted in 2017 its UPR mid-term review to the Office of the High Commissioner.

The extensive level of cooperation of the Islamic Republic of Iran with the Human Rights Council as briefly described is another strong argument for the untenability of tabling resolution L.41.

We regret that few unscrupulous Governments continue challenging integrity and credibility of the United Nations through pushing for this politically motivated resolution that only underscores how selective, irrelevant and subjective UN decisions could sometimes become to the realities on the ground. Rejecting and voting NO to this absurd resolution that has time and again proven to be a futile exercise will be considered as a right step towards enhancing the credibility of human rights discourse.

I thank you Mr. Chairman.

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