Skip to comments.UN defers US troop immunity vote (China's UN envoy had no instructions from Beijing)
Posted on 05/25/2004 9:34:34 PM PDT by Libloather
UN defers US troop immunity vote
Last Update: Wednesday, May 26, 2004. 9:32am (AEST)
The UN Security Council has indefinitely delayed plans to take up a US draft resolution shielding American troops from prosecution by a new global criminal court, a US diplomat said on Tuesday.
The resolution, which human rights groups argue is especially inappropriate so soon after the Iraqi prisoner abuse scandal, had been expected to come to a vote in the 15-nation council last on Friday and again on Monday.
The vote was called off on Friday after China's UN envoy said he had no instructions from Beijing, and Monday passed with no word on rescheduling.
"It's been deferred," US envoy Stuart Holliday told reporters on Tuesday, adding that no new date had been set.
"It will be taken up in due course," Mr Holliday said.
An earlier resolution putting US troops on UN peacekeeping missions out of the reach of the International Criminal Court expires at the end of June.
Pakistani Ambassador Munir Akram, the Security Council president for May, said he expected private council talks to take place before the US draft text could move forward.
Richard Dicker of New York-based Human Rights Watch said the fresh delay meant the measure was "in deep trouble".
"The United States announced last week they wanted it signed, sealed and delivered by Friday. But it is running into a rising tide of opposition," he told Reuters.
Among the 15 council nations, at least four - Brazil, Spain, Germany and France - are expected to abstain. In addition, Benin also may abstain and Romania has said it wanted to abstain unless this would result in the resolution failing.
Two years ago a similar resolution was passed unanimously but last year three nations abstained.
The court, the first permanent global war crimes tribunal, was set up to prosecute the world's worst atrocities, such as genocide, mass war crimes and systematic human rights abuses.
The United States, under former President Bill Clinton, was one of 135 nations to sign the 1998 treaty creating the court.
The Bush administration rescinded the signature, fearing the court could be used for politically motivated or frivolous suits against US troops serving on foreign soil.
None of the US prisoner abuses alleged in Iraq are eligible for prosecution by the court.
The US draft would exempt "current or former officials" from prosecution or investigation if the individual came from a country that did not ratify the treaty creating the tribunal.
Throw that on the legacy heap...
As long as Bush remains President I don't think it much matters what the U.N. wants regarding this issue.
=== As long as Bush remains President I don't think it much matters what the U.N. wants regarding this issue.
What makes you say this?
..In the meantime, china has halted all political executions, forced abortions, forced sterilizations and other forms of human rights abuses.....NOT!
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