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Human Rights Council election

Topics Covered: Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate.

Human Rights Council election:


US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has asked UN member states to support the US for its re-election to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC).


Trump regime had taken the U.S. out of the Council in 2018, saying it was biased against Israel and had members who were human rights abusers.

About elections to the UNHRC:

Elections to the Council happen annually, with countries serving for three years on a rotational basis, as some of the seats expire on 31 December every year.

Members shall not be eligible for immediate re-election after two consecutive terms.

There are 47 seats, equitably distributed according to five regional divisions (Africa, Asia-Pacific, Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Western Europe and other States).

  • Countries need a minimum of 97 votes to get elected, and everything happens by secret ballot.

As of January 2020, 117 of the 193 UN member States will have served as a member of the HRC. This broad membership not only reflects the UN’s diversity, but it gives the Council legitimacy when speaking out on human rights violations in all countries.


Prelims Link:

  1. About UNHRC.
  2. Year of establishment.
  3. Functions.
  4. Key reports of UNHRC.
  5. Elections to UNHRC.
  6. Members, term and eligibility.
  7. How many UN member states have served as UNHRC members at least once?

Sources: the Hindu.