THE INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATION FOR THE ELIMINATION OF ALL FORMS OF RACIAL DISCRIMINATION (EAFORD)
5 route des Morillons, CP 2100.  1211 Geneva 2, Switzerland
Telephone & Fax: 788.62.33 

COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
Fifty - fifth  session ( 22 March - 30 April 1999)

Item 17: Promotion and protection of human rights  

Madam Chairperson and distinguished colleagues,  

In this climate of adversity and tragedies that human beings inflict on each other, we have to think seriously of how to make the international mechanisms, which are the only instruments we have, effective and viable forces in resolving international conflicts and appeasing the bloodthirsty instinct thriving inside of man.  The United Nations is the only refuge and must be free from monopoly in order to make the people of the world believe in its mission and representation.

 

For days, we have listened carefully to statements on behalf of some of the people of this planet that suffer from mass deportation, massacres, and genocide.  Crimes the devils themselves would be ashamed of their brutal and evil nature.  What has befallen and is still befalling these people especially the Palestinian people of oppression and persecution lasting more than fifty years is an affront to human dignity at large and an affront to the letter and spirit of the very meaning of the word “human being.” 

We do not wish to repeat the details of the atrocities committed against the Palestinian people and the horrific facts cited by our colleagues in regards to what has befallen the people of the Balkan.  Such wickedness is supposed to profoundly shock humanity’s conscience and disgrace the most graceful among us.  It makes us wonder where international law is in all of this chaos ??!

Where are the international human rights instruments ??!

Where is the General Assembly of the United Nations, and where is the Security

Council  ??! 

The world society that issued at the beginning of this century the Charter of the United Nations and gave the right of veto to superpowers as USA and Britain, was a right aiming at preventing hostile acts of aggression by the strong and powerful against the weak and unarmed.  Such right of veto provided for rescuing future generations from the misfortunes and bloodshed of warfare.  Wars that twice before brought upon one generation misery beyond description.  Nevertheless, hostile transgressions of the strong against the weak are still being committed everyday and threatening international peace.  Yesterday against Libya and Sudan, today against Iraq and the Balkans, and tomorrow no one knows whose turn it might be.  All this is done in violation of international laws and the Charter of the UN and out of the context of Security Council resolutions.   

Madam Chairperson,  

One of the causes of the problem humanity faces every day is that of the world media.  As it has reached almost every corner of the earth, the world media has, more often than not, used subjective data - from dubious and questionable sources.  In an ingenious way, through employing biased and selective reporting techniques, the world media imposed a propaganda on the world, which is driving everyone downward as nations, and people stumble in darkness. 

Fitting a lie the attire of truth is much more dangerous and destructive than outright lying since very few viewers exercise the necessary caution or have a sufficient grasp of the facts.  Fitting a lie the attire of truth involves emphasizing half of the truth and intentionally overlooking the other half.  It also involves attaching significance to the insignificant while making what is significant appear to be insignificant.  Such world media practices rely on misrepresentation of the truth not in the ordinary sense of falsification, but rather, in a complicated and clever fabrication of misinformation.  The role world media has played and continues to play is an invisible and subliminal one, detected only by experts highly specialized in their given fields. 

World media and the influence few powerful pressure groups have over it has become an indisputable realty.  It has been turned into an underhanded weapon against the human mind, which is in a state of paradoxical turmoil.  If not altered, this situation will eventually lead to grave and dangerous consequences.  Internationally recognized human rights instruments and laws must be fully implemented to confront those who knowingly mix what’s false with what’s true ? 

Madam Chairperson, 

The preamble of the Charter of the United Nations states:  “We the People of the United Nations” 

These words have their depth and powerful meaning, and “We the people of the United Nations” must preserve them in our conscience and guard them through our work.  NGOs participating in this conference and even those who are not participating truly represent the people of the world.  Therefore, NGOs must rise to the challenge of highlighting the problems and identifying the solutions to prevent the recklessness of the strong and powerful from exposing the world to an imminent disaster.

 

EAFORD calls upon the international community and NGOs to support the following recommendations, which our organization considers as essential and of utmost importance:

 

(1) To call on the Secretary-General of the United Nations to condemn in the strongest possible terms any use of military force out of the context of Security Council resolutions. 

(2) To call on the General Assembly to find ways and means to enhance the effectiveness of the Security Council in discharging its principal role of maintaining international peace and security.  Consultations should be started to work toward seeking a possible solution to the right of veto and its interference with  resolutions adopted by consensus. We recommend devising appropriate measures and procedures for ensuring the forwarding of any veto interfering with a resolution adopted by consensus to the International Court of Justice for a final decision in support or against the veto.  (EAFORD submitted a letter to the Secretary-General in this regard and we hope it will receive the necessary support).  

(3) To call on the Secretary-General to work in cooperation with the General Assembly to promote the application of the articles and clauses of the Charter advising and requiring the forwarding of international conflicts to the International Court of Justice, and for military force not to be used before a judgment is issued by the International Court of Justice.

 

(4) To call on the Secretary-General to initiate plans in cooperation with the General Assembly for the establishment of a United Nations global satellite channel network, translated in all of the official languages of the UN.  The global satellite network should be under the supervision of the General Secretariat and should transmit the work and conferences of the United Nations and provide press coverage to shed light on issues of concern to international cooperation and human solidarity. 

Could our recommendations be oversimplifying complicated international matters ?Could we be aspiring for outlandish ideals beyond humanity’s reach ?  

It may seem so, but we acknowledge that humanity’s greatest strides toward peace and prosperity and the prevention of wide scale pain and suffering were made possible because of similar aspirations.

 

Thank you Madam Chairperson.                                                      EAFORD / Geneva / 20 April 1999