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UNHRC Apologizes for Taiwanese Official Access to UN Session
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The UN Human Rights Council apologized on Friday for giving a Taiwanese official access to a regular session of the body and pledged to prevent a repetition of "such infractions of UN rules" in the future.

Yao Chia-wen, head of Taiwan's "Examination Yuan," unexpectedly appeared and spoke for two minutes on Thursday at the fourth regular session of the Human Rights Council, which was being held in the Palace of Nations in Geneva.

The incident drew a protest from the Chinese delegation participating in the meeting.

According to the Secretariat of the meeting, Yao was registered by the Liberal International, a non-governmental organization with a Taiwan background.

In a statement, the 47-nation body said that the Taiwanese official "was not the holder of appropriate identity documents" and should have been refused access to the meeting room according to normal application procedures of the UN.

"The Secretariat and the UNOG (UN Office in Geneva) wish to apologize for this particular situation and the error made in delivering a badge to this person," said the statement.

"We have taken steps to withdraw the relevant statement (made by Yao) and references to it from the extranet, the web-cast and the press release."

It added that further investigation would be made on the incident and measures would be taken "in order to preclude such infractions of UN rules from occurring in the future."

Addressing Friday's meeting of the Human Rights Council, the Chinese delegation stressed that Taiwan is an inseparable part of China and Liberal International's talking about Taiwan's so-called status in the World Health Organization was in violation of UN rules.
It also urged the UN to investigate and punish the organization for abusing its rights to participate in the work of the Human Rights Council.

(Xinhua News Agency April 2, 2007)

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