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Pompeo says US critics at UN Human Rights Council ‘have the most to hide’

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Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Tuesday brushed off criticism of U.S. human rights records by countries such as China and Iran, arguing that countries who abuse human rights the most shout loudest.

"Brutal regimes shouting the loudest about our record have the most to hide about their abysmal records" Pompeo said at a press conference Tuesday.

CUBA, CHINA, RUSSIA ELECTED TO UN HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL; US BRANDS IT A 'MOCKERY'

It comes after the U.S. faced a periodic review at the controversial U.N. Human Rights Council on Monday, in which countries like Iran, Venezuela, Russia and China took shots at the U.S. at the forum.

China, whose communist government has persecuted minorities in the Xinjiang province and freedoms in Hong Kong, accused the U.S. of systemic racism, proliferation of guns and military interventions abroad.

“Stop interfering for political reasons in other countries’ internal affairs under the pretext of human rights,” its representative said.

U.N. Watch, a Geneva-based watchdog, reported that North Korea, one of the most repressive regimes in the world, expressed concern about “the USA's human rights violations at home and abroad.”

The Trump administration pulled out of the body in 2018, claiming it protected human rights abusers and had an anti-U.S. and anti-Israel bias.

AT HUMAN RIGHTS COUNCIL, 53 COUNTRIES BACK CHINA'S DRACONIAN HONG KONG CRACKDOWN

The council has long been a sounding board for countries with poor human rights records to take shots at the U.S. in particular.

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In October, Cuba, China and Russia on Tuesday were elected to the Council — a move that the U.S. branded a “mockery” of the body's intended purpose and as proof that Washington was right to leave the council in 2018.

However, President-elect Joe Biden has pledged to rejoin the Council when he enters the White House in January.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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