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November 27, 2014 / 5 Kislev, 5775
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘Human Rights Council’

Israel Tells UN Freeing Arab Murderers Proves It Wants Peace

Wednesday, October 30th, 2013

It wasn’t bad enough that Israel backed down from its principled position of boycotting the United Nations Human Rights Council because that body relentlessly and virtually exclusively hunts down the Jewish state for opprobrium. And Israel did this, albeit at the last possible minute, knowing that the HRC would attack Israel as soon as the Jewish State came within its sights.

But on Tuesday, Oct. 29, Israel was the one soiling itself before those in the UN’s star chamber even got a chance to get in their first whacks.

Yesterday, The Jewish Press and other media outlets reported that Israel chose to appear before the UN HRC for the Universal Periodic Review, which it had been boycotting for 18 months due to the HRC’s relentless attacks on and double standard towards the Jewish state.

Today, October 29, when Israel presented its human rights record to the HRC, which is the first step in the UPR process, it seemed to prove it has bought into the corrupt, demonizing ethos of the HRC.  Israel presented its worst acts of betrayal against its own people as evidence of proof that it is serious about peace.

Yes, the shameful act of releasing convicted murderers and those who tried their best to murder Jews as a “good will gesture” to the political entities who encourage those murders, was held up as proof by the Israel’s representative to the HRC, Eviatar Manor, that Israel seeks peace.  His words:

All of them have blood on their hands; all of them have murdered Israelis. Their release, I believe, illustrates Israel’s determination to reach an agreement with our Palestinian neighbors that will, once and for all, end the conflict.

Just so readers of The Jewish Press are not confused, we’ll repeat it again. The Israeli envoy to the UN HRC in Geneva presented Israel’s release back into the wild of what is planned eventually to be more than 100 murderers of Jews as proof that Israel wants peace.

More unrepentant murderers out there on the loose means peace is close to the hearts of the Israeli government, in UNspeak, and Israel is now speaking that language as well.

But just in case anyone thought that Israel’s self-flagellation was enough pummeling of Israel for one HRC session, you can rest comfortably because more than 75  other member nations lined up to also vilify Israel.

The Ambassador from “Palestine,” Ibrahim Khraishi, was one of the first to get in his digs.

“I think Israel only understands the language of pressure,” Khraishi said. He demanded that Israel withdraw from the eastern part of Jerusalem and the disputed territories, although those were not the terms Khraishi used.

Of particular significance was Khraishi’s comment about the release of Arab prisoners from Israel’s prisons.  No, Khraishi did not praise Israel’s peace bona fides, but instead demanded that all Arab Palestinian prisoners be released from Israeli prisons.

Why?

“We would also like to see Israel release all Palestinian prisoners from Israeli prisons, because Israel has no justification for keeping them in Israeli prisons,” the “Palestinian” Ambassador said to the exalted body.

Got that? Israel has no right to hold convicted murderers of its citizens in its prisons. And it is Israel that is permanently in the dock, not the political entity which creates and celebrates those murderers.

In addition to “Palestine,” HRC representatives from Switzerland, Egypt and the NGO Human Rights Watch were among the many who harshly criticized the Jewish state during Tuesday’s session.

And just to recall why it is that Israel initially boycotted the HRC: Israel has been the recipient of more critical resolutions from the HRC than any other country.  In addition, Israel is the only country to which the HRC has assigned a permanent investigator.

The final major insult which Israel dared to complain about is that on every HRC agenda there is “Agenda Item 7.” Agenda Item 7 mandates that in every UN HRC session, member states must debate Israeli human rights violations in what it refers to as the “Palestinian territories.”

And now Israel itself has categorized as evidence of its work on behalf of furthering peace and supporting human rights: releasing convicted murderers of Jews.

Russian Human Rights Council to Review Jewish Teacher’s Graft Sentence

Friday, August 9th, 2013

The Kremlin’s human rights council is reviewing a prison sentence meted out to Ilya Farber, a Jewish schoolteacher convicted of corruption.

The regional court of Ostashkov, north of Moscow, sentenced Farber last week to seven years in jail after convicting him of receiving $13,000 in bribes from a construction company. The company was seeking permission to renovate a culture club in a village where Farber settled in 2010 and began teaching art to children.

Many in Russia believe Farber did not receive a fair trial, partly because of his Jewish origins, according to Matvey Chlenov, the deputy executive director of the Russian Jewish Congress. Several people have testified that they heard the prosecutor in Farber’s first trial telling the jury: “Is it possible for a person with the last name Farber to help a village for free?” – a statement interpreted as referring to the fact that Farber is Jewish.

The Russian Jewish Congress has collected $30,000 in donations to help support Farber’s three young sons as he prepares to appeal the sentence, Chlenov said.

Alexander Brod, head of the Kremlin’s Human Rights Council, told the news site Utro.ru that he initiated a review of the case because he found the sentence to be “too harsh.”

Farber was arrested in 2011 and convicted. But a higher court scrapped the first conviction because of irregularities, including the judge’s instruction to the jury to “not to pay attention to the words of the defendant.” The conviction last week came in a retrial.

Farber was convicted of taking two bribes of $9,100 and $4,000 from the construction company Gosstroi-1 in exchange for permission to renovate a village club. Prosecutors said he signed off on the completed renovations when in fact none had been made.

Farber was a director at the club.

Chlenov said, “It is obvious Farber acted naively and some locals set him up and dropped their corruption on him.”

Ban Ki-Moon Caves In, ‘Rejects’ Falk’s Boston Terror-Israel Link

Sunday, April 28th, 2013

It took five days, but United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon finally said he “rejects” United Nations Human Rights Council official Richard Falk’s comments that cited “the American global domination project: and US-Israeli relations as provocations for the bombings.

Falk, a Jewish American who has long history of accusing Israel of “war crimes” and “apartheid, wrote as “long as Tel Aviv has the compliant ear of the American political establishment, those who wish for peace and justice in the world should not rest easy.”

Israeli officials as well as the UN Watch organization protested his remarks, but Ban’s spokesman simply stated that Falk “speaks independently” and does not necessarily represent the United Nations.

Further condemnations of Falk appeared in the media, including The Wall Street Journal, and U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations tweeted, “Someone who spews such vitriol has no place at the UN.”

Ban‘s spokesman finally announced five days Falk’s article, “The Secretary-General rejects Mr. Falk’s comments [which] undermine the credibility and the work of the United Nations.”

A Nation that Stands Apart

Thursday, January 31st, 2013

Today’s New York Times‘ editorial, Israel Ducks on Human Rights, a day after providing a platform for an anti-Israel, factually wrong op-ed about taking Israel/is to the ICC (and which Julian Ku wrote“If this is the Palestinian strategy to resolve their dispute with Israel, than the prospects for the settlement of this dispute are even more remote than I had previously believed.”), asserts that

Israel has increasingly isolated itself from the world with its hard-line policies on West Bank settlements, the Gaza embargo and other issues. This week, it unwisely set itself further apart with a decision to withhold cooperation from a United Nations Human Rights Council review of its human rights practices. If this paper, or any rational person, still considers the UNHRC objective, unstained,  impartial, considerate, reasonable, unbiased or somehow otherwise actually concerned with human rights and not an Israel-bashing forum whose members have ten times more problems with human rights than Israel while ignoring the human rights fiascoes in other places much worse, not to admit all the complaints against Israel are true, I stress, then the readership of the NYT as well as its editors is to be pitied.  By the way, the U.N. Human Rights Coordinator rep in Jerusalem has not yet replied or acknowledged my appeal.

The editorial even notes:

…The council…is clearly not without faults. More than half of the resolutions passed by the council since it started work in 2006 have focused on Israel and its treatment of Palestinians, and Israel is the only country that is a standing item on the agenda for the council’s biannual meetings.  The council hasn’t always been an effective human rights champion. But… Well, we don’t accept “buts” anymore.

The paper then contradicts itself, saying, “Israel shows not only an unwillingness to undergo the same scrutiny as all other countries.” But there is no “same scrutiny”! That’s the point.

The paper issue a threat or two and then adds that “Any new governing coalition that emerges from Israel’s recent elections should realize that there’s a cost to standing apart.”

Except that “Standing apart” is normative Jewishness. The anti-Semites stand us apart. Media bias stands us apart.Our uniqueness stands us apart. Our history and our achievements stand us apart. The Bible stands us apart. Numbers 23:9: “lo, it is a people that shall dwell alone, and shall not take the nations into consideration” (my translation).

While it would be better if the nations treated us better, understood us better, aided us more, at the fundamental level, we have to take that “apartness” into consideration.

Visit My Right Word.

The Next UN-Israel Showdown

Monday, January 21st, 2013

Another major confrontation is brewing between Israel and the United Nations. On January 29, Israel is scheduled for its quadrennial Universal Periodic Review (UPR) at the Human Rights Council (HRC). Following the March 2012 Council session, however, Israel’s foreign minister ceased all contacts with the HRC due to its obsessive bias and double standards targeting the Jewish state. As a result, Israel will not participate in UPR.

This has U.N. officials very worried and for good reason. If Israel fails to show up for UPR, this may force the HRC to end the stranglehold of abusive regimes over the institution and implement long overdue reforms.

UPR was instituted as the focal point of the newly-created HRC in 2006, which was established as a correction to its predecessor, the Commission on Human Rights. The Commission was disbanded after being hijacked by dictatorships and the Organization of the Islamic Conference. The huge embarrassment was compounded by a singular focus on Israel. According to U.N. Watch, approximately half of all country-specific resolutions condemned the Jewish state.

The Commission’s standing agenda included the notorious “Item 7,” meaning that Israel was the only country singled out at every session. Inevitably, this resulted in incessant discussion of alleged Israeli violations against Palestinians. By 2005, the situation had deteriorated to the point that U.N. Secretary General Kofi Anan remarked, “the Commission’s ability to perform its tasks has been . . . undermined by the politicization of its sessions and the selectivity of its work.”

UPR was created to ostensibly remedy the pervasive one-sidedness by implementing a peer review of the human rights records of every U.N. member state once every four years. It was heavily promoted by officials from non-governmental organizations (NGOs), Europe, and the U.N. as the linchpin of the HRC and proof of its “reformed” and universally-concerned character, despite the perpetuation of Agenda Item 7 on Israel. Human Rights Watch (HRW) in particular lobbied extensively for UPR.

In spite of the promises, the new HRC differed little from the Commission. Dictatorships and Islamic regimes continued to dominate the council and its leadership. Resolutions against Israel outnumbered those issued against any other country by orders of magnitude, and 5 of the first 9 special sessions targeted Israel. Prompted by the Arab League and the OIC, coupled with intensive campaigning by HRW, Amnesty International, the International Commission of Jurists, and other NGOs, there have been at least four separate “fact-finding” missions aimed at Israel, most notably the Goldstone Mission. Follow-up committees, reports for Goldstone (ignoring the repudiation of the report by Judge Goldstone himself), and the other inquiries continue to be placed on the agenda at every HRC session – wasting precious time and resources.

And although every country participated in the first round of the UPR process, which concluded in 2011, the meetings usually consisted of dictators patting each other on the back for their stellar human rights records. Bashing Israel and Canada stood in for “constructive dialogue.”

Based on this sorry history, the March 2012 HRC session was the last straw for Israel. While thousands were being butchered by the Assad regime in Syria, the HRC outrageously passed a resolution condemning Israel for the “suffering of Syrian citizens in the occupied Syrian Golan.” Due to intense lobbying by several European-government funded NGOs, including Al Haq and Badil, seeking to lay the groundwork for a new campaign against Israelis at the International Criminal Court, the HRC also initiated another fact-finding mission against Israel. This time, Israel decided to disengage entirely from the farce.

Once HRC officials realized that Israel’s decision would also affect UPR, they panicked. UPR can only work if there is 100% state participation. Without UPR, the façade of a reformed HRC is now in jeopardy. On November 28, 2012, the HRC President sent a desperate letter to Israel trying to guilt it into participation by ironically promoting the “universality” of the process. When Israel didn’t bite, the HRC met this week and openly chastised Israel for refusing to participate in the discredited framework.

In concert with the U.N., NGOs predictably began issuing condemnations. The NGO WILPF, in Orwellian fashion, lamented that, “Letting the non-cooperation of a state produce a double standard in the UPR process and setting such a precedent would undermine its object and purpose,” while ignoring the decades of double standards aimed at Israel. No doubt, similarly self-righteous statements will soon appear from HRW and others.

UN Watch: Secretary Ban Ki-Moon’s Reaction to Terror Attack on Israelis ‘Weak’

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

After a bus carrying Israeli tourists at Bulgaria’s Burgas airport exploded on Wednesday, killing seven and wounding at least 30 more, a U.N. spokesperson said that secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon condemned the attack “in the strongest possible terms.”

In fact, the U.N. chief’s choice of terms was weak in comparison to his statement two weeks ago on the bombing of churches in Kenya. In that case, Mr. Ban rightly spoke of “terrorist” attacks, “reprehensible and criminal,” saying the perpetrators “must be held to account.”

Today he referred only to the deadly “bombing” of Israelis – noticeably declining to describe it as an act of terrorism – and he made no call for holding the perpetrators to account. UN Watch today urged Mr. Ban to clarify his position and to truly use the strongest possible terms to condemn today’s terrorist attack.

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay has remained silent on today’s attack. By contrast, hours after the Gaza Flotilla incident of 2010, Ms. Pillay expresed her “shock” and condemned Israel. The top story on her office website instead criticizes Western states for how they combat terrorism, with America accused of having “dangerous” laws that violate due process.

Supported by a Facebook campaign now going viral, UN Watch called on the High Commissioner to speak out for victims of terrorism, condemn today’s gruesome murders in Bulgaria, and instruct her staff to investigate the perpetrators and hold them fully accountable for the crimes.

The U.N.’s 47-nation Human Rights Council has also stayed silent. By contrast, in 2004 it wasted no time in convening an emergency session to eulogize Hamas terrorist leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, and to condemn Israel. Currently, the council is busy with yet another “fact-finding mission” into alleged Israeli human rights violations. The council has never mandated an inquiry into terrorism or rocket attacks targeting Israelis.

Hamas Official to Speak at Human Rights Council

Sunday, March 18th, 2012

The Palestinian news agency Ma’an reported today that senior Hamas official Ismail al-Ashqar is set to speak before the United Nations Human Rights Council on Monday.

Al-Ashqar arrived in Switzerland on Sunday, ahead of a talk which will address the issue of Hamas members being held in Israeli jails.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/hamas-official-to-speak-at-human-rights-council/2012/03/18/

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