Durban Ad Hoc Committee: Day 4 Morning

The protection of states’ rights became the central issue of this morning’s Durban follow-up meeting. Arab and African states are pushing to restrict freedom of expression by criminalizing “Islamophobia,” and “defamation of religion” (which has now been stricken from the …

Durban Ad Hoc Committee: Day 3 Afternoon

Western and Islamic countries are at loggerheads over new international laws that criminalize Islamophobia. Today’s afternoon session of the Durban follow-up ended in disagreement, with several states urging the committee to consider the findings of independent experts to break the impasse.

Durban Ad Hoc Committee: Day 3 Morning

Heated debate continued at the Durban follow-up meeting on racism and discrimination when Nigeria and Pakistan sought to limit dicussions on homophobia and other forms of racial discrimination. At issue was the request made by Germany yesterday to clarify that opinions raised by certain countries do not reflect …

Durban Ad Hoc Committee: Day 2

Islamophobia and homosexuality were among the controversial topics that arose today at the Durban Ad Hoc Committee, which reconvened after a one-day postponement for regional group consultations. The committee adopted the draft agenda and resumed discussions on the program of work.

Durban Ad Hoc Committee: Day 1

Islamic states at the UN are once again attempting to change international law by defining criticism of Islam as a form of racism. As part of a broader Islamic campaign throughout the UN, which includes an annual “Defamation of Religion” resolution that is now making its way through the GA in New York, …

Journalist Magdi Khalil slams Muslim and Arab blocs for subverting U.N. human rights principles

Coptic Egyptian-American journalist Magdi Khalil, director of the Middle East Freedom Forum, explains in a recent article on the liberal website www.elaph.org how Muslim states are subverting the U.N. human rights system from within, using it to stifle criticism of Muslim countries and of Islam while promoting …

U.N. Human Rights Council concludes main annual session; Summary of key resolutions

The U.N. Human Rights Council concluded its main annual session on Friday, March 28. Before the start of the session, Freedom House published an updated report on Freedom in the World, which listed eight countries and two territories that suffer from the “worst of the worst” human rights violations: North …

Islamic states protest "Islamophobia," "defamation of religions" in talks on racism

At the U.N. Human Rights Council today, states undertook a discussion on racism and follow-up to the 2001 Durban anti-racism Declaration. All delegations that spoke condemned contemporary forms of racism and expressed commitment to a successful outcome of the Durban Review Conference, also known as “Durban II.”