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 Home > News & Policies > April 2004

For Immediate Release
April 23, 2004

Global Message

Promoting Democracy

U.S. statement at the UN Commission for Human Rights

The United States is deeply committed to working with other democracies to promote democratic values in UN bodies.

The 53-member United Nations Commission on Human Rights adopted the resolution by a vote of 45 to 0 (with eight abstentions). The resolution had 73 co-sponsors.

This resolution is closely linked to the Democracy Caucus, an association of countries that share values consistent with democratic ideals and human rights standards. It represents a movement to proactively strengthen the UN's efforts to promote democracy, the rule of law, human rights, and fundamental freedoms.

This measure is part of the United States' broader initiative to promote democracy in UN forums and programs, including working to make the Commission's membership and its work live up to its intended mandate.

The resolution, among other things:

  • Reaffirms that the promotion and protection of human rights is a basic prerequisite for a democratic society;
  • Acknowledges that democracy contributes substantially to preventing violent conflicts and to accelerating reconstruction in post-conflict peace building;
  • Recognizes the need for UN Member States to pay further special attention and contribute to democratic institution building;

Requests the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights to promote democracy by considering designating a focal point in the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights.

The United States continues to work with the growing Democracy Caucus to strengthen support for democracy in the UN agenda.