Articles, Opinions & Views: Malaysia is a BIG joke on the United Nations Human Rights Council

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Among the people here.

They never wanted me around

Except to calm their fears.

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Lord, It needn't be so grand,

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Where the saints had often trod

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Malaysia is a BIG joke on the United Nations Human Rights Council
Monday, October 18, 2021

M'sia fails to return Indira Gandhi’s daughter but preaches human rights? - Commander S THAYAPARAN (Retired) Royal Malaysian Navy

Malaysiakini: “As always, when it comes to Malaysia and human rights, it is a matter of hoping for the best while preparing for the worst.” - Human Rights Watch deputy director (Asia) Phil Robertson.

COMMENT | Malaysia getting a seat (again) on the United Nations Human Rights Council is one of the many reasons why many view the United Nations with disdain. I am not going into the various other reasons why people have disdain for the UN but countries like Malaysia preaching about human rights is one of the more obvious reasons.

Let us be clear. We have all these political operatives from Umno, Bersatu, PAS and Pejuang talking about the “evils” of liberalism, pluralism and Western values but at the same time, they want to lecture the world on human rights? I mean what are they offering in return, what kind of value system are they offering in lieu of “Western values”?

Let us talk about that value system Malaysia is offering, using the kidnapping of Indira Gandhi’s daughter as an example. Right now, the Kuala Lumpur High Court has set a date for a hearing of a suit by Indira alleging that “…the IGP had deliberately and negligently disregarded a mandamus order issued by the Federal Court in failing to investigate or take appropriate action to return her daughter, Prasana Diksa, who is now 13 years old.”

Keep in mind that various IGPs are on public record, claiming that they would not follow the court order or that they knew where the kidnapper was but for some reason could not do anything or that they were looking for a win-win situation. This is not in dispute. In fact, a rational outcome of any legal proceedings would acknowledge this.

Now imagine if a top cop in one of those demonised liberal western democracies had said the same thing as these various IGPs. What do you think the response would have been? What do you think the public outcry would have been, but more importantly, what do you think the governments of those secular liberal democracies would have done?

Think about it this way. Indira’s case involves numerous branches of human rights violations, not to mention systemic dysfunction of the state security apparatus and successive Malaysian governments have done nothing for her. Even Pakatan Harapan chose not to get involved, even though various political operatives were standing by her side demanding that the government act and return the kidnapped child.

So you see, even if the “progressive” Harapan did not give a damn about Indira’s child, what do you expect from a government, that prioritises the religious aspects of this kidnapping over the legal remedy meted out by the court?

Worthy of mockery

Foreign Minister Saifuddin Abdullah said a couple of things worth mocking in his recent presser crowing about Malaysia’s seat (again) on the human rights council. He said: “Malaysia will continue to advocate strongly against human rights violations such as the systemic oppression of the Palestinians and the Rohingya...”

Well of course those issues would be on the table but the foreign minister may not understand that with the rejoining of the United States in this council, the agenda will not be as simplistic on those issues as he believes.

The words of US Ambassador to the United Nations in New York, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, should give us some context when it comes to the politics of the council when she said: “Our goals are clear: stand with human rights defenders and speak out against violations and abuses of human rights,” and the US would also “oppose the council’s disproportionate attention on Israel.”

But let us forget about the kind of politics that goes on in the UN for a minute and hone in on another statement worthy of mockery. The foreign minister also said that Malaysia “...intended to prioritise the rights of vulnerable groups, particularly children, women…”.

Oh, really? What of the rights of Prasana Diksa, who is now 13 years old and living with her kidnapper? What about the rights of this child in your country who has been forcibly removed from her mother and where the courts ordered her return?

Not to mention the rights of Indira, who as a woman is part of that “vulnerable” group, you mentioned. What of her rights? For years the rights of Indira and her daughter have been dismissed by the political establishment and now Malaysia wants to lecture the world on human rights?

Saifuddin also said: “As a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural and democratic society, we believe Malaysia will be able to share the values of inclusivity, acceptance and understanding as captured under the Keluarga Malaysia concept.”

Really? You do realise that the current government is composed of plotters from a coup that destroyed a democratically elected government? You do realise that the very basis of race-based parties that reject secularism, liberalism and pluralism are the antitheses of a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural country not to mention the rejection of various UN treaties which would reflect such democratic concepts?<

Of course, you do, and like the fate of Indira Gandhi and her kidnapped child, the political establishment really does not care. That’s why a seat on the council is a punchline to a tragic joke.

posted by Major D Swami (Retired) @ 12:34 PM  
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