UNO: Russia accuses USA, EU of dual standards

Russian participants in the human rights commission session have accused the United States and European Union countries of dual standards after their refusal to support a resolution against neo-Nazism and neo-fascism, initiated by Russia and Belorussia. The countries, which voted against the resolution adopted in Geneva with 36 votes out of 53, are the USA, Japan, Great Britain, France, Ireland, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Sweden, Germany, Australia, Hungary and Croatia.

The resolution deplores modern manifestations of racism, racial discrimination and xenophobia, urging the UNO members to take measures to curb the spread of extremist movements, groups and political parties around the world. The UN human rights commission expressed through this document its deep concern over the glorification of former members of the Waffen SS-voluntary detachments set up in the years of the second world war on occupied territories, as for instance, in Latvia and Estonia, to fight on the side of Nazi Germany. Criticism was voiced against the unveiling of monuments and memorials to participants in these detachments and their staging of public rallies. The resolution says this practice insults the memory of the SS organisation's numerous victims, poisons the mentality of young people and is incompatible with the obligations of the UN members.

Leonid Skotnikov, Russia's ambassador at the UNO's Geneva office, referred to the voting of the European Union, the USA and Japan against this resolution as absurd. "Reasons for voting against this resolution are really hard to find," said Skotnikov. "The resolution offers indisputable statements encouraging dialogue and cooperation in a bid to combat such manifestations of racism and xenophobia." This opinion is shared by Ella Panfilova, the chairman of the Human rights commission under the Russian president, attending the 60th session of the UN Human Rights Commission, who consideres such a stand as a telling example of slyness and dual standards.

There is historical evidence of Latvia's Waffen SS legion having massacred in punitive expeditions tens of thousands of Jews, Russians and Belorussians.

The Nuremberg International Tribunal which prosecuted the heads of Nazi Germany in 1945-1946 condemned the Waffen SS as a criminal organisation.

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