International water advocates say Canada halted an initiative to have the United Nations Human Rights Council recognize water as a basic human right, according to an article in the Toronto Star.The article said the Geneva-based body wrapped up an intense three-week session late Friday without passing a German-Spanish resolution intended to enshrine its importance in a world where more than 2 billion people live in water-stressed regions.

After its 46 members accepted a consensus resolution, Canadian representative Sarah Geh told the council that Canada does not view the resolution as creating a human right to water under international human rights law.

In his final speech, German representative Reinhard Schweppe stressed action is urgent, adding that access to clean water and sanitation, is “a part of human dignity.”

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