Stricter Rules For The Advancement And Protection Of Human Rights / Laritza Diversent

Laritza Diversent, 25 November 2017 — Paragraph 9 of Resolution 60/251 establishes that, in order to be able to occupy the position of Member of the Human Rights Council, countries will have to apply stricter rules for the advancement and protection of human rights. Cuba claimed in its candidacy that it signs up to 46 of the 61 instruments adopted by the international community in regard to human rights.

Certainly the Cuban state is signatory to 6 of the 9 most important universal treaties on human rights and to 2 of the optional-supplementary protocols in the Convention on Childrens’ Rights. Nevertheless, the country doesn’t have any way, or political will, to meet several of the requirements of the Human Rights Council, especially in relation to the general obligation to respect and protect, which are derived from the international instruments to which it has agreed.

In the 2009 EPU (Universal Periodic Assessment of every signatory’s progress on the advancement of human rights) it undertook to carry out a study into the need to complete legislative and administrative changes with a view to giving effect to human rights domestically and to progress its actions to adopt, reinforce and to align its national legislation with its international obligations pertaining to the treaties to which it is signatory.

In 2013, it reiterated its commitment  to revise and maintain the congruence between its national legislation and international human rights instruments, and its international commitments, although, inconsistently, it only took note of the Convention’s suggested recommendation to incorporate the Convention against Torture into national legislation.

Broken promises and undertakings which should be taken into account by the community of nations when considering whether it should continue as a member of the Human Rights Council.

Up to now there is no legal regulation or procedure which permits the assessment of the compatibillity between domestic rights and international ones, and therefore there is no possibility that Cuba, as a member of the Council, will apply stricter norms on the advancement and protection of human rights.

[i] Sections  2 and 3 of  paragraph 130, recommendation formulated by  the United Arab Emirates, Trinidad and Tobago, Ghana, Uzbekistan, Mexico

[ii] Paras. 170.20 yand 170.22 formulated by Belarus and China

[iii] Para. 170.24, formulated by  France

Translated by GH