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UN: A silent spectator | International Relations Notes

By: Iram Farooq Rana

The United Nations (UN), an international body, possesses a distinguished role by formulating a founding charter of human rights. It is dubbed as the champion of “human rights” which seems like a big joke on account of its passive role. Human rights have been mentioned seven times in the United Nations charter as its key purpose and guiding principle. But Alas! it is performing the role of a dumb and blind player in defending and protecting human rights.

The whole world is witnessing the bitter reality of violation of human rights in Syria, Palestine, Iraq, Burma and Kashmir. Human rights are rights inherent to all human beings, regardless of race, sex, nationality, ethnicity, language, religion or any other status.

Human rights include the right to life and liberty, freedom from slavery and torture, freedom of opinion and expression, the right to work and education and many more. Everyone is entitled to these rights without discrimination.

Sadly, not even a single human right is enjoyed by the inhabitants of these oppressed states. They are deprived of their basic rights of living. The pen shakes while writing about the atrocities occurring in the suffering states.

The fateless people spending homeless lives, their houses devastated and turned into mounds, innocent children not feeling the love and warmth of their parents, young girls as widows and old people staring at the dead bodies of their young sons; this horrible picture of annexed states raises a huge question mark upon the credibility and reliability of the UN.

The UN was established in order to bring peace, prosperity and harmony among nations. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) is a milestone document in the history of human rights. Every year, a session of the UN is held in September in order to resolve different international issues.

But, sarcastically speaking, the UN seems like a theatre where a speech competition is held. Every member of the UN delivers a forceful speech on different issues, but afterward, it is followed by silence. They just “come, speak and go”. Undoubtedly, the UN will have a storage box for millions of piles of papers.

Talking about the Kashmir issue, 71 years have passed since the UN adopted its resolution to resolve the dispute by organising a plebiscite. But still this dispute is unresolved; rather it has transformed into an independence movement.

Since August, 5 2019, 80 million Kashmiris have been locked down by the extremist Modi government in their homeland. Torture, rape, murder, disappearances, the use of violence in internal conflicts, executions and countless deaths are what sums up the atrocities in Kashmir.

This is a slap in the face of the UN and declares it as a failed organisation. Moreover, history is jotting down the violation of human rights in Syria, Iraq, and Palestine and the role of the UN as a silent spectator.

Why is the UN not exercising its power to protect rights in these states? Do their lives have no importance in the documents of the international body? Just imagine ourselves for a simple moment, to become victims of these atrocities.

But we all have also stitched our tongues by not talking about inhuman activities in different parts of the world. The biggest responsibility falls upon the champion of human rights, the UN, to break its silence and make itself credible by expressing its concern regarding the violation of human rights. Its agenda to protect human rights should not only exist on paper but also on practical grounds.

Courtesy: The Nation

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