The US State Department on Tuesday slammed a UN report by the UN Commission of Inquiry on Israel and the Palestinians, which places the blame for the conflict between the two sides almost exclusively on Israel, while barely mentioning human rights violations by Hamas and other Gazan terror groups.
“As we have stated repeatedly, we firmly oppose the open-ended and vaguely defined nature of the UN Human Rights Council’s (HRC) Commission of Inquiry (COI) on the situation in Israel, the West Bank, and Gaza, which represents a one-sided, biased approach that does nothing to advance the prospects for peace,” said State Department Spokesperson Ned Price.
“Israel is the only country subject to a standing agenda item at the HRC and has received disproportionate focus at the HRC compared to human rights situations elsewhere in the world. While no country is above scrutiny, the existence of this COI in its current form is a continuation of a longstanding pattern of unfairly singling out Israel. We reengaged with and later re-joined the HRC in part to be in a better position to address its flaws, including this one, and we will continue to seek reforms.”
"This 18-page @UN_HRC Report mentions #Israel 157 times and Hamas only 3 times. There is not even a semblance of impartiality or intellectual honesty. It is as if the UN is not even trying anymore to disguise its blatant antisemitism and hostility towards Israel." pic.twitter.com/J1Y2mGd212
— The International Legal Forum – ILF (@The_ILF) June 7, 2022
“The report devotes only a few paragraphs out of 18 pages to violations by Hamas and other Palestinian terror groups,” says Anne Herzberg, NGO Monitor’s Legal Adviser and UN representative. “Similarly, the report attacks foundational policies of Israel, making multiple false claims regarding discrimination in order to build a case of racism and so that this permanent COI can later accuse Israel of apartheid.”
Israel’s Foreign Ministry responded by publishing a video of an Israeli teen protecting his little sister from rockets in Sderot, and stating: “In May 2021, 4,000 rockets were fired by Hamas at Israel. While Israelis were running to bomb shelters, the COI was gearing up to malign Israel. The COI was commissioned by the UNHCR, a body which includes some of the worst human rights abusers and has a history of singling out and vilifying Israel while ignoring major global crises.”
“Their 18-page report solely defames Israel while ignoring Palestinian terrorism and violence targeting Israelis. All you have to do is a quick word search in the report: Israel is mentioned 157 times, Hamas is mentioned 3 times, and terror is mentioned 4 times.”
“The report which is a condensed version of older equally unreliable reports cost 4 million dollars to produce. That’s $232,672 per page.”
“The report does not address Israel’s security needs nor Palestinian terror. It’s no surprise that three of the COI committee members have a history of anti-Israel opinions. So what does this dangerous and discriminatory report leave us with? More hatred, violence and global antisemitism, demonization of Israel and a reward for terrorism.”
UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer stated in response to the report: “The report turns a blind eye to Palestinian terrorism and embraces the Hamas narrative that Israel is the root cause of all conflict. This is exactly what we expected from Navi Pillay, who actively lobbies governments to ‘sanction apartheid Israel‘ and to condemn Israel for the very conflict that she is meant to investigate.
“Cynically, the Pillay Commission claims to have ‘ensured the inclusion of a diverse range of perspectives’ by meeting with Palestinian organizations dedicated to condemning Israel, as well as Israeli organizations dedicated to condemning Israel,” said Neuer.
“This cynicism was taken to new heights by the Pillay Report concluding that Israel’s ‘perpetual occupation’ is the ‘underlying root cause’ of the conflict on the basis of their consultations with both ‘Palestinian and Israeli stakeholders.’”
“Claiming that Israel alone is to blame for the conflict, while saying nothing about Palestinian terrorism and their stated goal of destroying Israel, is bad enough; suggesting that this is a representative view of ‘Israeli stakeholders’ is another thing altogether.”
“The fact is that this inquiry was created by the Palestinians and Pakistan for the sole purpose of targeting Israel, and the person appointed to chair the inquiry, based on the council’s own rules on impartiality, is completely disqualified on account of her recent and longstanding lobbying to boycott and sanction Israel.”
“The U.S. is now a member of the council and so cannot be silent. We call on Secretary Blinken to take action to remove Pillay immediately,” Neuer concluded.
— Hillel Neuer (@HillelNeuer) June 7, 2022
The report will be presented to the Human Rights Council session on June 13.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)