Blogging from the UN Human Rights Council

by Peggy McGuinness

Opinio Juris is pleased to bring (almost live) blogging from the UN Human Rights Council session that opens today in Geneva. Our guest blogger is Elizabeth Kandravy Cassidy of UN Watch. Elizabeth is an American-trained lawyer whose prior experience includes teaching law in Africa and the United States. Prior to joining UN Watch, Elizabeth did a bit of guest-blogging for Opinio Juris in our first year. The following is a description Elizabeth provided of the work of UN Watch:

UN Watch is a non-governmental organization based in Geneva, Switzerland dedicated to monitoring the UN’s performance against the yardstick of its own Charter and to promoting human rights for all. We believe in the UN’s mission to create a more just and peaceful world and to ensure fundamental rights and freedoms worldwide, and we regret that the UN too often falls short of these goals. Our main areas of focus include the UN’s human rights processes, UN management reform, the UN and civil society, and equality at the UN.

UN Watch was founded in 1993 by Ambassador Morris B. Abram, the former U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN in Geneva and prominent civil rights lawyer. Now chaired by Ambassador Alfred H. Moses, UN Watch is governed by an international board that includes international academics, human rights lawyers, and former high-ranking government officials. Since 2000, UN Watch has been affiliated with the U.S. NGO the American Jewish Committee.

UN Watch regularly publishes reports and articles on UN affairs and provides a bi-weekly email briefing to some 5,000 subscribers (sign up here). We participate actively at the Human Rights Council, as we did at its predecessor, and in other UN fora. Our analysis has been cited by major international media outlets, including the International Herald Tribune, the New York Times, Reuters, CNN, and BBC News. During the past year, we have presented reports on the Council to both the U.S. Congress and the Canadian Parliament.

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