03 March 2010
Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki has launched a fierce verbal assault on the West, charging that European countries subject Muslim communities to insult and violence and that the United States and Europe sponsor terrorism. Mottaki told the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva that some Western states were gross violators of human rights and were promoting lewdness to undermine family life.
"There is a growing trend in applying double standards by the Western countries with regard to the freedom of expression and opinion," Mottaki told the 47-member council at the start of its annual Spring session.
"Muslims throughout the world in general and the Muslim communities in Western countries in particular, have been the target not only of massive propaganda campaigns but outright social castigation and open violence, all under the pretext of freedom of expression," Mottaki claimed.
Maria Otero, the US undersecretary of state for democracy and global affairs, made no mention of Mottaki’s speech and criticized the disproportionate amount of time the Human Rights Council spent on Israel. Asked by reporters about Iran's bid to join the UN body, she said: "It is very important for the council to keep a focus on human rights abuses in Iran and make sure that focus is maintained and addressed."
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