Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Back in late August the Obama Administration submitted a report in response to a 2006 United Nations directive that all of its member nations submit reports every four years on the state of human rights within their borders.  The document will formerly be submitted in November. 

 Defenders Online reports that the ACLU praised the report for “correctly acknowledging the need for improvement in several key areas, including racial justice, women’s rights, LGBT rights and discrimination against Muslims and Americans of South Asian and Arab descent.” But it went on to assert that it failed to present “a full picture of the state of human rights in the U.S., [and] neglects to address other key areas … including felon disenfranchisement, inhuman prison conditions, racial disparities in the death penalty system and deaths and abuse in immigration detention.”

The report is pretty lame.  Basically, It is a summary of Obama administration programs, initiatives and plans.

But there is more.

Native Americans who say they were either uninformed about the process and their right to comment, or who were just ignored have now been told by the U.N. they'll have to wait another four years to have any say...if then.

Consequently you could say the report and the process are just one more human rights abuse.

The following is from Censored News: Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights News Publisher.


Native Americans who were never informed, or ignored, will have to wait another four years to report US human rights abuses to UN in Periodic Report 

By Brenda Norrell
Censored News
Photo: Navajos remember the 1979 Church Rock NM uranium spill and legacy of death from uranium mining on Navajo Nation. Photo 2010: Garrett Brennan Stewart, Navajo.
The United Nations Human Rights Council says it is too late to comment on the United States' human rights record, as presented in the US State Department's Periodic Review.

In a response today to Censored News, the UN says the deadline has passed. All of those Native American individuals and organizations, who were never informed, or who were ignored in the Listening Sessions in the final report, will have no chance to offer testimony on US human rights abuses.

This reveals that the process, undertaken by the US State Department, was a human rights abuse in itself.

The next report will be in four years.

Although the US State Department held "Listening Sessions," around the country, almost all of the Native American testimony was ignored in the final 29-page Universal Periodic Review Report to the UN.

The US State Department held a Listening Conference in Window Rock, Arizona, on the Navajo Nation. However, in its final report, there is no mention of Navajos, Navajo deaths from uranium mining, respiratory diseases resulting from decades of coal mining and power plants on the Navajo Nation,or the relocation of 14,000 Navajos from their homes to make way for Peabody Coal mining on Black Mesa.

Some important statements were included in a separate human rights report. Those organizations connected with the US Human Rights Network were able to submit statements as members of the "civil society" in a 423-page report.

However, other Native people were either never informed, or ignored in the Listening Conferences. Indigenous Peoples at the southern and northern borders, struggling for their rights of passage, battling Border Patrol abuse, and the human rights abuses carried out by their own elected tribal governments, are among those who were left out of the process.

The US State Department's watered-down summaries of those Listening Conferences, which are posted online but not included in the final report, are a dismal effort that ignores key names and issues. These summaries expose the United States' lack of concern with the human rights of Native Americans in the US.
--Brenda Norrell, Censored News
From: Secretariat of the Human Rights CouncilUPRsubmissions@ohchr.org
Dear Mrs. Norrell,
The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights wants to inform your office that the deadline for submissions of stakeholders in relation to countries scheduled to be reviewed at the 9th session of the Universal Periodic Review Working Group (November / 2010) has now passed. The Summary of stakeholders information has been finished and posted in our web page. Consequently, please note that we can not accept any other submission for the 9th session.
For information regarding the Universal Periodic Review mechanism, please kindly refer tohttp://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/hrcouncil/upr/index.htm
I would also ask you to check in the following web page the reports for the United States UPR:http://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/UPR/PAGES/USSession9.aspx
To: Secretariat of the Human Rights Council
From: brenda norrell 
07.09.2010 19:19 ToUPRsubmissions@ohchr.org, civilsocietyunit@ohchr.org, ccastaneda@ohchr.org
Subject Indigenous submissions for US Periodic Review
UPR submissions OHCHR Hello,
Indigenous individuals and organizations who have not had the opportunity
to comment on the US Human Rights record, would like to do so before
the November session.
Please let me know how they can submit their statements.
Also, please note that many of the comments at the Listening Conferences from
Native Americans were not included in the US State Department's Periodic Review.
Sincerely, Brenda Norrell
Also see:
US State Department's watered-down 29-page Universal Periodic Review Report

US Human Rights Network's 423 page full report:

The US State Dept.'s pathetic summaries:

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