B’nai B’rith International President Seth J. Riklin and CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin have issued the following statement:
We strongly commend Ambassador Michèle Taylor, U.S. permanent representative to the U.N. Human Rights Council, and Ambassador Deborah Lipstadt, U.S. special envoy to monitor and combat anti-Semitism, for their firm, forceful and swift public statement responding to virulently anti-Israel and anti-Jewish remarks by Miloon Kothari, a member of the U.N.’s latest “Commission of Inquiry” targeting Israel.
They said: “Antisemitism and anti-Israel bias are a persistent venom that for far too long has poisoned international discourse and polluted international organizations including the United Nations.”
Taylor and Lipstadt noted that Kothari referred “disparagingly to the ‘Jewish lobby,’ echoing age-old antisemitic tropes, and questioning the right of the state of Israel to be a member of the United Nations. The United States is in solidarity with the Government of Israel and the Israeli people. We categorically reject antisemitism and anti-Israel bias, including the comments by Mr. Kothari.”
We join the United States in opposing the biased nature of the Commission of Inquiry and in calling on the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet to publicly repudiate Kothari’s views. Secretary-General António Guterres and his focal point on combating anti-Semitism, High Representative for the U.N. Alliance of Civilizations Miguel Moratinos, should do the same.
A new official statement today by Navi Pillay, the Commission chair, has deflected from B’nai B’rith’s and partners’ well-founded condemnation—and only confirms gross, ongoing partiality on the part of the three Commission members.