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Israel Tells UN What It Can Do with its Human Rights Review

Egypt's representative declared that the council faced "a moment of truth."

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Yigal Palmor.

Foreign Ministry spokesperson Yigal Palmor.
Photo Credit: Erlend Skevik

On Tuesday, Israel became the first country to boycott a UN Human Rights Council review of its rights situation, and now the world is debating how to respond, AFP reported.

“I see that the delegation of Israel is not in the room,” council president Remigiusz Henczel told the delegates at the United Nations in Geneva.

Israel is not a member of the council, but all 193 UN countries are required to undergo Universal Periodic Reviews (UPRs) of their human rights situation. But last March Israel cut all ties with the Council, after it announced that it would probe how Israeli settlements are infringing on the rights of the Palestinians.

“We cut all our contacts with the council last March, including the current activity,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor told AFP, adding: “Our policy has not changed.”

It’s the first time since the reviews began, in 2007, that a country under evaluation chooses to be absent without an explanation.

Council president Henczel called on the council to adopt a draft decision on the way it should respond to the snub by the Jewish state, suggesting it should urge Israel to resume its cooperation with the UPR process.

He also suggested that Israel’s review be rescheduled for no later than during the UPR session starting in October, 2013.

Egypt’s representative declared that the council faced “a moment of truth.”

He warned that a “soft” approach towards Israel would create a dangerous precedent and leave “a wide-open door for more cases of non-cooperation.”

Israel’s main ally in the council, the United States, supported Henczel’s proposal, with ambassador Eileen Chamberlain Donahoe insisting – without mentioning Israel by name – that the text reflected the “best effort to find common ground and to protect the UPR mechanism going forward.”

Britain called for a “proportionate and balanced conclusion.”

Ireland’s representative for the European Union supported a “consensual” way forward.

The Pakistani representative would have none of that: “We wonder … whether this kind of cooperative spirit would be extended to some other countries that are not as close to some of the major powers in the world,” he said.

The council adopted Henczel’s proposal.

AFP noted that Israel “has long accused the Human Rights Council of singling it out, noting that it is the only country to have a specific agenda item dedicated to it at every meeting of the council, and that the body has passed an inordinate number of resolutions against it.”

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17 Responses to “Israel Tells UN What It Can Do with its Human Rights Review”

  1. Richard Sandler says:

    I agree 100% that the UN is stacked with totalitarian fascist regimes haveing the gaul to rate Israel a free and democratic nation.

  2. Richard Sandler says:

    Fascist totalitarian regimes are rating Israel….who is rating them?

  3. Ryan Clarkson says:

    so 193 countries are in the wrong while israel is in the right in this story?

  4. Frank Qalman says:

    Sure. It's the same with Germany 1936 – 96% of the Germans woted for you know whom.

  5. I AM CALLING FOR A NATIONAL BOYCOTT BY JEWS OF ANY INTERFAITH HOLOCAUST PROGRAM WHERE HATIKAVAH IS INTENTIONALLY EXLUDED DUE TO MUSLIM PRESSURE OR CLERGY WHO SUPPORT THE PALESTINIAN CAUSE. PLEASE GET THE WORD OUT. RABBI DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG

  6. Ron Kall says:

    Ryan, Israel is in the right when only Israel out of the 193 countries is singled out for this obvious politically motivated abuse.

  7. Jay Sprueill says:

    I wonder how many of those 193 council members have ever been to ISRAEL?

  8. Hurrah for Israel! The world has yet to understand what Israel is…and they never will – they don't have the inner core belief that "fires" the Israeli people. I'm a Christian that supports Israel unconditionally! Shalom

  9. I am a suport Israel in their rights, to defend them selves and their government. I am considered by those of Jewish faith to be a gentile Christina. I stand with them, and behind them. Praise G-d, may He bless and keep them. I pray for the peace of Israel on G-d's terms.

  10. Harold Taback says:

    And the USA and Europe support this anti-semitic and discredited organization.

  11. Anonymous says:

    The Human Rights is tainted be who are present, like the Egyptians, the Pakistanis, etc. Did Syria have an honored seat?

  12. Anonymous says:

    Ryan Clarkson Are you insinuating that cesspool in NY, that hotbed of anti-Americanism, is impartial to Israel?

  13. Richard Sandler says:

    Ryan….count again. Stop creating your own facts. " We are all entitled to our opinions but not our own facts." Sen. Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

  14. They are all bullies picking on the little country of Israel. shame on them.

  15. They are all bullies picking on the little country of Israel. shame on them.

  16. Egypt is sort of correct. No one should participate since the council is a fraud.

  17. Daniel Shapiro says:

    With 193 member countries of the un, only 13 resolutions were passed by the unhrc. 1 to each of 7 countries and SIX to ONE country, Israel. Membership of the unhrc includes: Ethiopia, Pakistan, the Republic of Korea, the United Arab Emirates, Venezuela, China, Cuba, Jordan, Congo, Kuwait, Russian Federation, Libya, Malaysia, Uruguay, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Uganda This list of member countries includes some of the worst despotic regimes on the face of the earth.

    Can reasonable people argue convincingly, no… HONESTLY, that there is not a clear and present bias against Israel. My guess, ryan is that you aren't interested in right or wrong.

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