The U.S. State Department issued a strongly-worded condemnation Monday against the existence of the United Nations Human Rights Council’s Agenda Item Seven — the ever-present agenda item devoted exclusively to Israel.
Item 7 reads: “Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories” and is used as the regular conduit through which to lambast Israel at the Council.
At least, until this week.
The statement issued by department spokesman Mark Toner expressed America’s strong and unequivocal opposition to the existence of Item Seven, calling it “yet another reminder of that body’s long-standing bias against Israel.
“No other nation has an entire agenda item dedicated to it at the Council,” the State Department observed, adding, “The continued existence of this agenda item is among the largest threats to the credibility of the Council.”
U.S. Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley did not attend the Item Seven General Debate session in protest against its existence, but the statement made it clear she will be in the hall when it comes time to cast her ballots:
“It does not serve the interests of the Council to single out one country in an unbalanced matter. Later this week, the United States will vote against every resolution put forth under this agenda item and is encouraging other countries to do the same.
“The U.S. is dedicated to the pursuit of respect for international human rights by all countries in the world and we call on all UN member states and international partners who are committed to human rights to work with us to pursue much needed reforms in the UN Human Rights Council.”