German Foreign Minister Westerwelle kicks off German Human Rights Council campaign in New York

Apr 11, 2012

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On Thursday, 12 April, German Foreign Minister Dr Guido Westerwelle was in New York to kick off the German campaign for membership of the Human Rights Council for 2013-2015.

Respect for and development of human rights are a key priority for the German Government. The aim of German human rights policy is worldwide implementation and protection of the entire range of civic, political, economic, social and cultural human rights.

In Article 1 of the German Basic Law human rights are described as the basis of every community, of peace and of justice in the world. The text immediately places the subject of human rights in an international context.

Within the framework of the United Nations, the Federal Government is consistently working with its partners towards the continual development and implementation of human rights standards. This is done in regular, close and cross-regional cooperation with UN member states and relevant UN institutions, in particular the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva.

During its current membership of the Security Council, Germany is putting special emphasis on the needs of women and children in situations of armed conflict. Another important priority - in the General Assembly and the Human Rights Council - is the promotion of the right to water and sanitation - to name just one example.

Elections for the Human Rights Council are scheduled for 12 November 2012. During the election campaign, the German government will continue to inform about the priorities of the German human rights policy, its global activities and to underline that Germany will be a valuable addition to the Council's membership.

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