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Pietro Marcenaro: Israel should not suspend its relations with the UN Human Rights Council

Strasbourg, 30.01.2013 – Pietro Marcenaro (Italiy, SOC), Chair of the Committee on Political Affairs and Democracy of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and rapporteur on the Middle East, has called on the Israeli government to reconsider its decision to boycott the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) and suspend its relations with the UN Human Rights Council.

The UPR is a mechanism whereby the Human Rights Council reviews the human rights records of all UN member states. It involves a dialogue-based procedure, with the participation of all the parties concerned and civil society, resulting in recommendations which each country is free to accept or refuse.

“No UN member state has so far refused to submit to this procedure, which is a legitimate obligation,” said Mr Marcenaro. He added, “I am appealing to Israel, as a great democracy: dialogue is necessary even if it seems difficult; isolation from the international community is not a means of ensuring security for Israel.”