Religious Freedom

House of Lords written question – answered on 26th September 2014.

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Photo of Lord Hylton Lord Hylton Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are taking to ensure that a willingness to uphold, and to give due priority to, Article 18 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is one of the criteria for the selection of the next United Nations Secretary-General.

Photo of Baroness Anelay of St Johns Baroness Anelay of St Johns Minister of State, Deputy Chairman of Committees, Deputy Speaker (Lords)

As the former Senior Minister of State Baroness Warsi said in the House on 22 July, Her Majesty’s Government does not put forward criteria for candidates. However, we would want to see a proven leader, fully committed to the values of the UN, with sufficient political authority and expertise to lead and manage such a large and complex organisation. The ultimate responsibility to uphold Article 18 lies with states, as it is states that have human rights obligations. However, as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights is at the core of UN values we would expect any UN Secretary General to urge all states to uphold them.

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