Statement by Ambassador Susan E. Rice, U.S. Permanent Representative to the United Nations, on the Draft Resolution on Extrajudicial, Summary, and Arbitrary Executions, November 20, 2012
The United States applauds the defeat of the amendment proposing to remove reference to "sexual orientation or gender identity" from the resolution on extrajudicial, summary, or arbitrary executions. The proposed change would have effectively sent a message to the world that people targeted on account of their sexual orientation or gender identity do not enjoy the same right to life as others.
It is fitting, on National Transgender Day of Remembrance, that the Third Committee agreed to acknowledge protections from extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions on the basis of gender identity for the very first time.
Two years ago, the General Assembly overwhelmingly voted to reinsert language on sexual orientation to this very resolution, and, since that time, the UN Human Rights Council has affirmed that all human rights apply to everyone, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity. The United States will fight to ensure that the remarkable progress the UN has made on LGBT issues in the last four years is not rolled back. Today's vote on gender identity is evidence that we are, in fact, expanding international support and moving forward.
We thank our partners in civil society and the human rights defenders around the world that joined us in urging delegations to oppose this reprehensible initiative, and we will continue our efforts across the UN system to ensure that human rights protections continue to be extended to all, regardless of who they are or whom they love.