US Secretary of State Antony Blinken told the United Nations Human Rights Council on Wednesday that Washington will seek a permanent seat on the panel for the 2022-2024 term.
The announcement is the latest instance of President Joe Biden’s administration’s pivot towards multilateralism and rejection of former leader Donald Trump’s “America First” approach.
Trump withdrew from the council in 2018 accusing it of anti-Israeli bias and allowing chronic rights-abusing states as members.
Blinken also called the 47-member council “flawed”, but warned in early February the US absence has created a “vacuum” of leadership that has been abused by “countries with authoritarian agendas”.
The current membership of Eritrea, Venezuela, China, Russia, and Uzbekistan has been widely criticised among US legislators.
“I’m pleased to announce the United States will seek election to the Human Rights Council for the 2022-24 term. We humbly ask for the support of all UN member states in our bid to return to a seat in this body,” Blinken said in a video address to the Geneva-based body.