United Nations, May 09:
In a vote that could give a boost to its case for permanent seat in an expanded Security Council, India was today elected to the newly-established Human Rights Council getting 173 out of 191 votes in the United Nations general assembly.
India got maximum number of votes in the Asian group, showing the vast support it enjoys among the member states.
Also elected from the Asian group were Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, China, South Korea and Indonesia.
In terms of votes, Pakistan was way down at sixth position getting 149 votes.
Interestingly, India got far more votes that both Japan and China whose tally was 158 and 146 respectively.
Closest to India was Indonesia, which got 165 votes followed by Bangladesh with 160 votes.
Members of UN's new rights body elected
May 9, 2006 – 8:16PM
The UN General Assembly elects the first members of the new UN Human Rights Council, which it created in March to replace the discredited UN Human Rights Commission.
Sixty-four countries have put forward their names for the council's 47 seats.
Election is by secret ballot and contenders must get at least 96 votes – an absolute majority of the General Assembly's 191 members – to win.
Some UN officials are predicting the balloting could go on for several days if some candidates repeatedly come up short of 96 but refuse to withdraw and let others step in.
After the initial election, winners will be awarded terms of one, two or three years, as determined by the drawing of lots, so that beginning in the council's fourth year, a third of the council will be elected each subsequent year.
Council members are limited to serving two consecutive terms.
The seats are allocated by region, with 13 set aside for Africa, 13 for Asia, six for Eastern Europe, eight for Latin America and the Caribbean and seven for the regional grouping known as "Western European and other states" – a bloc that includes, among others, the United States, Canada and Israel.
Here are the candidates by region:
Africa: Algeria, Cameroon, Djibouti, Gabon, Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Mauritius, Morocco, Nigeria, Senegal, South Africa, Tunisia and Zambia.
Asia: Bangladesh, Bahrain, China, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Japan, Jordan, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Malaysia, Pakistan, Philippines, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, Sri Lanka and Thailand.
Eastern Europe: Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Czech Republic, Georgia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovenia and Ukraine.
Latin America and the Caribbean: Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico, Nicaragua, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela.
Western Europe and other states: Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Netherlands, Portugal, Switzerland and Britain.