(Washington, D.C., Sept. 9, 2019)—B’nai B’rith International President Charles O. Kaufman and CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin have issued the following statement:
As an accredited nongovernmental organization at the United Nations, we deplore U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet’s biased statements today before the U.N. Human Rights Council. In remarks purportedly about global human rights, Bachelet devoted two paragraphs to denouncing Israel’s housing and security policies in the “occupied Palestinian territory.” Specifically, she baselessly alleged “very high levels of settler violence,” and “unlawful killings and injuries of Palestinians by Israeli security forces across the entire occupied territory,” without so much as referencing Palestinian terrorists’ ongoing attacks against innocent Israelis. Syria, which is in its eighth year of a bloody civil war and whose dictator has used chemical weapons against his own people, was mentioned once.
Later, Bachelet delivered a further “update” devoted entirely to Israel. Once again ignoring both Hamas’s rockets and terror tunnels and the glorification of violence by the Palestinian Authority, Bachelet denounced Israel’s treatment of Palestinian rioters during what she referred to benignly as the Palestinian “Great March of Return.” Although she acknowledged that “a number of demonstrators” have hurled bombs into Israel and overrun Israel’s security fence, most of the statement’s text was devoted to attacking Israel for defending itself against the aggressors. The statement falsely described the “protests,” not at all peaceful in explicit purpose or in conduct, as “largely peaceful.”
The U.N. Human Rights Council’s obsession with anti-Israel denunciations has gone far enough. Bachelet should retract her statements condemning the Middle East’s only liberal democracy for defending itself, and instead focus on the most urgent human rights crises around the world.
B’nai B’rith International has advocated for global Jewry and championed the cause of human rights since 1843. B’nai B’rith is recognized as a vital voice in promoting Jewish unity and continuity, a staunch defender of the State of Israel, a tireless advocate on behalf of senior citizens and a leader in disaster relief. With a presence around the world, we are the Global Voice of the Jewish Community. Visit www.bnaibrith.org