The UN Commission on Human Rights, the predecessor of the Human Rights Council, was heavily criticized for several reasons. First, the Commission was politicized in that it adopted resolutions condemning human rights violations only in selected countries, while failing – due to political considerations – to adopt any resolution condemning serious human rights violations in other countries. Secondly, it applied double standards, meaning that the standard it adopted for condemning human rights violations varied depending on the country concerned. Some people even maintained that at the root of the problem was the fact that countries openly violating human rights became members of the Commission.1 To borrow the words of former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in his opening statement to the first session of the Human Rights Council, a ‘culture of confrontation and distrust’ pervaded the Commission. In place of this culture he stressed the need for a ‘culture of cooperation and commitment’. In closing his statement, however, he warned ‘never [to] allow this Council to become caught up in political point-scoring or petty manoeuvre’.2