SOS at the UN: Countries want to deny our Human Rights on Water ! (Denmark (chair of the EU), the UK, Canada and New Zealand)

http://earthpeoples.org/blog/?p=1347

Dear Friends,

The situation is critical here in New York – I need your help if we are to save the UN recognition of the human right to water and sanitation – this is very important!

Immediately, sign the letter to protect the human right to water and sanitation in the Rio+20 negotiations, but this is not enough.

We need to do more!

Here is the situation.

There are 4 countries which are blocking the recognition from the text, Denmark (chair of the EU), the UK, Canada and New Zealand. Thus it is effectively the 27 countries of the EU and Canada and New Zealand. Other will join them if we do not apply pressure and they stick to their positions!

I have pasted the latest negotiating positions below so you can see their positions.

The 130 countries of the G77 are trying to stand firm for water and sanitation, but the UN works on consensus and if these 4 countries (and therefore the EU) do not back down, they will effectively change international law if they are successful in refusing to recognize their legal obligations.

This is the way the UN works, no consensus and an issue is effectively dead and will never be able to be moved forward; this despite it already having been legally recognized by the General Assembly, the Human Rights Council and the World Health Organization.

Bottom line, we must pressure these 4 countries, strongly and quickly, the Rio+20 text must not go forward in the next 2 or 3 days without explicit recognition of the human right to water and sanitation otherwise it will be claimed that there is no consensus and therefore effectively no human right to water and sanitation.

If this happens, the right it will be challenged and removed from every future UN document until it is not longer even suggested….in practical terms it will have been eliminated!!!

Because of the critical nature of this situation, I am asking you to phone these 4 missions at the numbers below….

Ask to speak to their Rio+20 negotiator if possible, ask for their name, ask for their direct email, ask them to take a message and give it to the negotiator.

Then write a letter and fax them if you can, demanding that they support recognition of the human right to water and sanitation in chapter 67 of the document entitled “The Future We Want”, which is the negotiating text for Rio+20.

We should also do this for every other EU country, especially if you are from that country!

The EU also has to sort this out internally and the other 25 countries of the EU must not allow Denmark and the UK to control the EU’s position resulting in an abrogation of their legal responsibility.

This text will be debated on Wednesday or Thursday, so we need to act quickly.

Here is a link for all the numbers you will need…

Tell them that the human right to water and sanitation has been recognized by the General Assembly, the Human Rights Council in numerous resolutions and they must not block its recognition in the Rio+20 text.

http://www.un.org/en/members/index.shtml

• Denmark – (212) 308-7009

In particular tell them that they have a responsibility to represent the whole EU as chair…

• United Kingdom – (212) 745-9200

• Canada – (212) 848-1100

• New Zealand – (212) 826-1960

Use the link above for other EU Member States!

I will try and send more targeted information, but if we work together we let our voice be heard!

Finally, the reason I am asking you to fax to the missions is that all faxes are presented to the ambassador and will be recorded for reporting back to Capital – this is not done with emails or even phone calls….

In solidarity,

Anil Naidoo
Blue Planet Project
Council of Canadians

As promised… to help you understand this better, I have pasted the latest negotiating text below.

I realize it is not easy to decipher but if you understand the bracketing and deleting system, you will see that Canada and New Zealand have joined the EU in attempting to eliminate the human right to water and sanitation.

They are doing this by reverting to ‘access’ to water language to replace the human right to water and sanitation.

You will also note proposals promoting full cost recovery and natural water capital…but water will also be impacted by other parts of the negotiations which are focused on innovative financial mechanisms, market- mechanisms, eco-innovation etc.

Fortunately, the G77 is trying to protect the recognition of the human right to water and took the precise language from the original General Assembly resolution recognizing the human right to water and reinserted that text at 67. alt bis

Again, the bottom line is that if we do not apply pressure over the next 2 days on these 4 countries, Canada, Denmark, New Zealand and the UK, (and the whole EU), we will lose recognition of the human right to water and sanitation.

This is a very real threat…..

Here is all the text on water, but para 67 is what you should look at most closely….CLICK HERE for Draft Document

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