Monday 26 June 2017

Time to let in the light on Ireland's UN votes

Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan. Photo: Damien Eagers
Foreign Affairs Minister Charlie Flanagan. Photo: Damien Eagers
Editorial

Editorial

We have been here in various guises before. Ireland is accused periodically of pursuing national interests with some questionable regime to the detriment of human rights. The pragmatic clashes with the idealistic.

Often it is hard to be too dismissive of a pragmatic world view. It's a very big bad world out there - Ireland must do business in a global economy. If we do not someone else will - and it is always possible to make clear Ireland's long-established views on the importance of human rights at many other levels in the international political sphere.

But this time there are some important variants in the classic scenario. Saudi Arabia has successfully secured membership of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, of which Ireland has been chair since March. It is quite likely, though not fully proved, that this happened with Ireland's vote.

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