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U.S. returns to Human Rights Council

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NEW YORK (JTA) — The United States won a seat on the U.N. Human Rights Council.

The U.S. success in elections Tuesday reverses a Bush administration policy of boycotting the group in part because of its focus on Israel.

President Obama has made the move a cornerstone of his foreign policy efforts, viewing the council as part of his "new era of engagement," the Associated Press reported.

Four nations accused of human rights abuses — Cuba, Saudi Arabia, China and Russia — also joined the Geneva-based council.

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