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December 27, 2014 / 5 Tevet, 5775
 
At a Glance

Posts Tagged ‘UN General Assembly’

Netanyahu Warns the UNGA: ‘Don’t Be Fooled by Iran’s Charm Offensive’

Monday, September 29th, 2014

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu hammered home the message on Monday in his address to the United Nations General Assembly that Gaza’s ruling Hamas terror organization is just another caliphate wolf in sheep’s clothing, so to speak — as is Iran’s charming new President Rouhani

Netanyahu told the world body at midday that of all the military forces around the globe, Israel’s Defense Forces have the “highest moral values of any army in the world.”

Netanyahu made the statement while refuting what he said were the “lies” spoken by Palestine Liberation Organization chairman Mahmoud Abbas during his speech three days prior at the same podium.

The prime minister focused most of his efforts, however, on underlining the importance of dealing with the issue of radical Islamic terrorism and its impact, drawing a parallel between the Hamas terrorist organization and the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, ISIS. Like ISIS, Gaza’s ruling Hamas terrorist group also wants to see the establishment of a worldwide caliphate, Netanyahu explained.

“ISIS and Hamas are branches of the same poisonous tree,” Netanyahu said. “When it comes to their ultimate goals, Hamas is ISIS and ISIS is Hamas.” There is very little difference between them, he emphasized. Both those groups as well as Hezbollah, Iran and other terrorist entities and supporters “all share a fanatic ideology. They seek to create ever expanding enclaves of militant Islam — where there is no freedom, or tolerance.”

When it comes to Israel, Netanyahu said, the goal is the same: destruction of the Jewish State. But that is not all, he pointed out.

“The Nazis believed in a master race; the militant Islamists believe in a master faith.”

Iran, Netanyahu said, is just as dangerous as the radical Islamist militant organizations and “Iran with a nuclear weapon will be the most grave threat to us — militant Islamist with a nuclear bomb.”

The prime minister added, “It’s one thing to confront militant Islamists in a pickup truck with a rifle, and another thing when they have weapons of mass destruction. Would you let ISIS enrich uranium or develop intercontinental ballistic missiles? Then you can’t let Iran [do it] either.

“To defeat ISIS and to leave Iran as a threshold nuclear power is to win the battle and lose the war,” Netanyahu warned.

“Don’t be fooled by Iran’s manipulative charm offensive. It’s designed for one purpose only — to lift the sanctions and remove the obstacles on Iran’s path to the bomb.”

India, Israel PMs Pledge Closer Ties Ahead of UN General Assembly

Monday, September 29th, 2014

Israel’s Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi met late Sunday night in New York shortly after Netanyahu arrived in the city to prepare for his address to the United Nations General Assembly, set for Monday September 29.

Modi is making his first visit at the UN General Assembly since he led his Hindu nationalists to a sweeping victory in April-May elections.

The first such meeting in more than 10 years, both leaders were smiling as Netanyahu expressed “delight” at meeting Modi, and immediately invited him to visit Israel. If the Hindu prime minister of India agrees, it will be a “first.”

The two discussed the threat of Islamic terror in the face of a recent statement by Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahiri announcing the establishment of a new branch of the international terror group in southeast Asia.

Also on the agenda were other security and development issues, among them the matter of international sanctions on doing business with Iran. India is one of the nations that has reduced its import of Iranian oil in compliance with the sanctions – Netanyahu reinforced the importance of that move with an explanation of the threat posed by Iran’s nuclear development program.

“I believe that if we work together, we can do so with benefits for both our peoples and well beyond,” Netanyahu said during a press briefing held during their meeting. “We are very excited by the prospects of greater and greater ties with India. We think the sky’s the limit,” he added, describing both nations as “ancient civilizations” that are also democracies. Modi echoed Netanyahu’s words. “I agree with you that the ties between Israel and India are historic ties.” He added that, “India is the only country where anti-Semitism has never been allowed to come up and where Jews have never suffered and have lived as an integral part of our society.”

Trade between Israel and India at present stands at approximately $6 billion, according to figures published in New Delhi. India is one of Israel’s largest defense industry clients.

Transcript of PM Netanyahu’s Speech at UN General Assembly (+Video)

Tuesday, October 1st, 2013

Remarks by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu During General Debate of the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly

 

 

PRIME MINISTER BENJAMIN NETANYAHU: Thank you, Mr. President. I feel deeply honored and privileged to stand here before you today representing the citizens of the state of Israel. We are an ancient people. We date back nearly 4,000 years to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. We have journeyed through time. We’ve overcome the greatest of adversities.

And we re-established our sovereign state in our ancestral homeland, the land of Israel.

Now, the Jewish people’s odyssey through time has taught us two things: Never give up hope, always remain vigilant. Hope charts the future. Vigilance protects it.

Today our hope for the future is challenged by a nuclear-armed Iran that seeks our destruction. But I want you to know, that wasn’t always the case. Some 2,500 years ago the great Persian king Cyrus ended the Babylonian exile of the Jewish people. He issued a famous edict in which he proclaimed the right of the Jews to return to the land of Israel and rebuild the Jewish temple in Jerusalem. That’s a Persian decree. And thus began an historic friendship between the Jews and the Persians that lasted until modern times.

But in 1979 a radical regime in Tehran tried to stamp out that friendship. As it was busy crushing the Iranian people’s hope for democracy, it always led wild chants of “death of the Jews.”

Now, since that time, presidents of Iran have come and gone. Some presidents were considered moderates, other hard-liners. But they’ve all served that same unforgiving creed, that same unforgiving regime, that creed that is espoused and enforced by the real power in Iran, the dictator known as the supreme leader, first Ayatollah Khomeini and now Ayatollah Khamenei.

President Rouhani, like the presidents who came before him, is a loyal servant of the regime. He was one of only six candidates the regime permitted to run for office. See, nearly 700 other candidates were rejected.

So what made him acceptable? Well, Rouhani headed Iran’s Supreme National Security Council from 1989 through 2003. During that time Iran’s henchmen gunned down opposition leaders in a Berlin restaurant. They murdered 85 people at the Jewish community center in Buenos Aires. They killed 19 American soldiers by blowing up the Khobar Towers in Saudi Arabia.

Are we to believe that Rouhani, the national security adviser of Iran at the time, knew nothing about these attacks?

Of course he did, just as 30 years ago Iran’s security chiefs knew about the bombings in Beirut that killed 241 American Marines and 58 French paratroopers.

Rouhani was also Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator between 2003 and 2005. He masterminded the — the strategy which enabled Iran to advance its nuclear weapons program behind a smoke screen of diplomatic engagement and very soothing rhetoric.

Now I know: Rouhani doesn’t sound like Ahmadinejad. But when it comes to Iran’s nuclear weapons program, the only difference between them is this: Ahmadinejad was a wolf in wolf’s clothing. Rouhani is a wolf in sheep’s clothing, a wolf who thinks he can pull the eyes — the wool over the eyes of the international community.

Well, like everyone else, I wish we could believe Rouhani’s words, but we must focus on Iran’s actions. And it’s the brazen contrast, this extraordinary contradiction, between Rouhani’s words and Iran’s actions that is so startling. Rouhani stood at this very podium last week and praised Iranian democracy — Iranian democracies. But the regime that he represents executes political dissidents by the hundreds and jails them by the thousands.

Rouhani spoke of, quote, “the human tragedy in Syria.” Yet, Iran directly participates in Assad’s murder and massacre of tens of thousands of innocent men, women and children in Syria. And that regime is propping up a Syrian regime that just used chemical weapons against its own people.

Rouhani condemned the, quote, “violent scourge of terrorism.” Yet, in the last three years alone, Iran has ordered, planned or perpetrated terrorist attacks in 25 cities in five continents.

Rouhani denounces, quote, “attempts to change the regional balance through proxies.” Yet, Iran is actively destabilizing Lebanon, Yemen, Bahrain and many other Middle Eastern countries.

UAE Condemning Iranian Occupation of its Territories

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

While the United Arab Emirates has welcomed the refreshing stance of Iran’s president Hassan Rouhani, it has called upon the international community to urge Iran to respond to repeated calls for a just settlement of the islands dispute between the two countries, either through direct, serious negotiations or by referral to the International Court of Justice.

In 1971, after the British finally left the Middle East, Iranian forces occupied the islands of Abu Musa, Greater Tunb, and Lesser Tunb, located at the mouth of the Persian Gulf between Iran and the UAE. Iran continues to occupy the islands, which the UAE has been contesting to no avail.

Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, speaking before the meeting of the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly, denounced the Iranian occupation.

“…My Government expresses, once again, its regret regarding the continued Iranian occupation of our three islands: Abu Mousa, and Greater and Lesser Tunbs, and demands the restoration of the UAE’s full sovereignty over these islands,” Al Nahyan said.

“We emphasize that all actions and measures taken by the Iranian occupation authorities are null and void, and are contrary to international law and to all norms and common human values,” he continued. “Therefore, we call upon the international community to urge Iran to respond to the repeated peaceful, sincere calls of the United Arab Emirates for a just settlement of this issue, either through direct, serious negotiations or by referral to the International Court of Justice to settle this dispute in accordance with the principles of the UN Charter and the provisions of international law.”

Noting the change in tone in iran’s political leadership, the foreign minister declared: “Proceeding from the firm principals of our regional and international relations, we welcome the declared approach of Hassan Rouhani, President of Iran, and we affirm that our country will sincerely build on such approach in the interest of promoting security, stability and prosperity in the region.”

Now, why can’t the Palestinians be this polite?

International Law and the ‘Right of Return’

Tuesday, May 7th, 2013

Pro-Palestinian political leaders, media outlets, and activists the world over continuously assert that the Palestinians should be granted a right of return according to international law. However, NONE of these claims hold water if one actually examines international law. For example, the Palestinians rely heavily upon the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which states that “no one should be arbitrarily deprived of the right to enter his country.” Yet, can one consider Palestinians born in Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, and other Arab countries to be Israeli citizens and thus deprived of the right to enter their country?

Most of the Palestinians living across the Arab world were never born in Israel and have never lived in Israel. Secondly, even the minority who did live in Israel did so under the British Mandate, not under Israeli rule. They fled before they had a chance to receive citizenship rights and their Israeli blue ID cards, because their leadership was opposed to them coexisting with the Jewish people. Such peoples are about as Israeli as Turks who lived in Ottoman-controlled Greece yet left are Greek. So why should the Palestinians be any different? Based on international precedents, Palestinians are entitled to equal rights within their present countries, yet not Israeli citizenship.

Another document that pro-Palestine activists rely on when stating that there should be a Palestinian right of return is UN resolution 194, which states, “The General Assembly… resolves that refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible.”

UN General Assembly resolutions, however are never legally binding. Instead, they can be viewed as mere suggestions, which Israel can either listen to or ignore. But even if this resolution was legally binding, it states “refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbors.” This means that any Palestinian who doesn’t want to live at peace with their neighbors shouldn’t be given a right of return, thus implying that the decades of terrorism orchestrated by the Palestinian leadership and supported by the majority of the Palestinian population means that the Palestinians lost their “right of return.”

Furthermore, the resolution states at the “earliest practicable date.” This means that so long as this proposal cannot be practically implemented, it doesn’t need to happen yet. Because there have been decades of animosity and hatred between Israelis and Palestinians and since the cultural gap between Israelis and Palestinians is gigantic, the idea of a Palestinian right of return seems impractical and it will continue to be so in the foreseeable future.

Given what has happened in Bosnia since the signing of the Dayton Agreements, where ethnic animosity and violence has prevented most refugees from returning to their homes despite the existence of such a right, it seems that a right of return isn’t a good solution for ethnic conflicts. Most Holocaust survivors didn’t want a right of return to Europe, preferring to be resettled in a new country that was free of the traumas that they experienced. Jewish refugees from Arab countries also generally have no desire to return to Arab states, for similar reasons. Given this, is it really in the Palestinians best interest to come to a foreign country whom they have been engaged with in a violent conflict for decades? While the Palestinian refugee crisis needs to be solved, it should be solved in the Arab world, not in Israel.

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Israeli UN Envoy Admonishes UN Security Council

Sunday, January 27th, 2013

Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations Ron Prosor told the UN Security Council last week that the “Council needs a GPS system to find its moral center in this debate on the Middle East.”

Prosor addressed the issue of settlements in his speech, saying that “there are many threats to the security in our region. But the presence of Jewish homes in Jerusalem – the eternal capital of the Jewish people, has never been one of them.”

He further clarified that the existence of a Palestinian state did not depend on E-1 construction connecting Ma’ale Adumim and Jerusalem, which are 7 kilometers apart. “Those who make this claim are the same people who stand up and speak about a contiguous state between Gaza and the West Bank, areas divided by more than 70 kilometers… which would cut Israel in two.”

Addressing the current Middle East situation and Israel’s latest elections, Prosor admonished the Security Council for its continued silence in the face of terror and oppression that reigns across the Middle East. “Most of the millions in our region who live under oppression, fear, and violence are completely ignored in this debate,” the ambassador stated during UN Security Council’s monthly open debate on the Middle East in New York last Wednesday.

Prosor stated that, instead, a “litany of half-truths, myths, and outright lies about Israel” are the focal points of Security Council sessions, adding that the monthly debate which the Security Council holds on the Middle East falls short of its original mission to advance global peace and security.

The ambassador emphasized that there were other challenges facing the Middle East, highlighting both the regime of Syrian President Bashaar Assad and the Aytollah regime in Iran. “More than 60,000 were killed in Syria in just the past two years,” Prosor stated. Among those killed, he said, were hundreds of Palestinians living in refugee camps bombed by Assad’s fighter jets. Prosor also noted that Assad’s chemical weapons could be taken over by Al Qaeda or Hezbollah. He mentioned the oppressive Hezbollah regime in Lebanon that had “transformed the country into an Iranian terror base,” and that Iran’s advanced missile technology with nuclear weapons and extremist ideology “leaves the lives of millions” hanging in balance.

Following Prosor’s speech, U.S. ambassador to the UN Susan Rice took the opportunity to criticize Israel on settlement activity. “We have reiterated our longstanding opposition to Israel’s West Bank settlement activity, as well as construction in East Jerusalem, which run counter to the cause of peace,” declared Rice. She said that construction in E-1, connecting Jerusalem to Ma’aleh Adumim, “would be especially damaging to efforts to achieve a two-state solution.”

Ambassador Rice, however also voiced Washington’s disapproval of the Palestinians’ use of ‘State of Palestine’ on their nameplate at the UN Security Council session. She stated that the United States did not recognize the UN General Assembly vote to upgrade the status of Palestine as a non-member observer state on November 29, 2012, saying that “…any reference to the ‘State of Palestine’…do not reflect acquiescence that ‘Palestine’ is a state.”

While the Middle East peace process and occasionally even Syria, dominated the Security Council session on Wednesday – they were described as the “two major crisis” facing the region by several ambassadors – Israel’s UN envoy offered another perspective on the debate.

“I have a novel idea. Perhaps this discussion could occasionally spend some time examining why the situation in the Middle East remains unstable, undemocratic and violent. I’ll give you a hint: it has nothing to do with Israel,” stated Prosor.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/israeli-un-envoy-admonishes-rice-over-east-jerusalem/2013/01/27/

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