A large group of 68 Senators from both sides of the aisle, led by Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Ben Cardin (D-MD), wrote a letter to Secretary of State Antony Secretary Blinken urging the Biden administration to “prioritize reversing the UN Human Rights Council’s (UNHRC) discriminatory and unwarranted treatment of Israel by leading a multinational effort in the Council and in the UN to end the permanent Commission of Inquiry (COI) on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”
In May 2021, the UNHRC approved an open-ended investigation of Israel’s alleged “war crimes, treatment of Palestinians, and human rights violations,” the only country-specific agenda item on the Council’s agenda. The COI on Israel solely focuses on the actions Israel took during the conflict between Israel and the terrorist group Hamas.
“This Commission is unfair, unwarranted and singles out Israel, further fueling anti-Semitism,” the Senators cautioned.
With the US returning as a member of the UNHRC earlier this year, the senators urged Blinken to use the US’ position to “redirect resources from wasteful and biased investigations into Israel and focus on human rights crises around the world.”
“We appreciate your commitment to put the Council’s ‘disproportionate focus on Israel’ at the top of the Biden administration’s agenda for reforming the Council when the U.S. announced it would seek to rejoin the UNHRC …By unfairly singling out Israel, the UNHRC undermines its credibility to investigate human rights violations around the world,” the senators wrote.
“The COI is the latest endeavor by UNHRC to discredit the only Jewish state and is likely to further fuel antisemitism worldwide. Therefore, we urge you to act upon the Administration’s commitment to defend Israel from discriminatory treatment at the Human Rights Council and throughout the UN system,” the senators continued.
The UN Human Rights Council members include Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Somalia, Nigeria, Qatar, Egypt, Cuba, China, Venezuela, Mauritania, Sudan and Libya.
The UNHRC is infamously biased against Israel, with nearly half of its resolutions focused solely on Israel while it ignores war, strife and atrocities committed around the globe. It passed roughly an equal number of resolutions from 2006-2019 condemning Israel and the rest of the world combined.