Human-Rights Offenders Running for Open Spots on UN Human Rights Council
The upcoming elections for the United Nations Human Rights Council have some nations with stellar human-rights records on the ballot.
There are four upcoming vacancies in the Asia-Pacific States as Qatar, Malaysia, Maldives and Thailand end their terms. Running for those four spots are China, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Vietnam, with Maldives running for re-election.
China's black marks include its one-child policy and has a cyber army on the prowl to arrest any online dissenters, Saudi Arabia has a highly trained beheading squad and denies basic rights to women, and Vietnam imprisons and tortures dissenters and religious-freedom advocates while using Christians for mine sweeps.
In the Eastern Europe bloc, Poland and Moldova are stepping down, leaving two assured seats for the only two candidates: Russia -- where journalists mysteriously wind up dead, dissenters get tortured and imprisoned on trumped-up charges and gays have fewer rights each day -- and Macedonia.
In the Latin American bloc, the terms for Ecuador and Guatemala are ending as Cuba, Mexico and Uruguay vie to fill their spots.
Over in Africa, Angola, Libya, Mauritania and Uganda end their terms on Dec. 31, and Algeria, Morocco, Namibia, South Africa, and the world's newest country, South Sudan, will run in the election.
In the Western Europe and other states bloc, Spain and Switzerland step aside for the only two candidates, France and the UK. America's term expires in 2015.
The members of the Council serve for a three-year and aren't eligible for immediate re-election after two consecutive terms.
The election is on Nov. 12.