UN Refuses to Hear Facts

During a meeting of the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on Friday 1st October, the president of the Council cut short a speaker from UN Watch, claiming that his video presentation contained “derogatory, insulting and inflammatory remarks” that were personal attacks upon individuals and not acceptable.

Yet the speaker – Hillel Neuer – was quoting comments that were posted on Facebook by the individuals concerned. So, somehow, the United Nations has decided that quoting statements made by a person is an unacceptable way of attacking them.

Watching a brief video recording of the event immediately arouses suspicions, as the Council’s president, Nazhat Shameem Khan, only allowed the presentation to run for 30 seconds before stopping it and then reading out a carefully worded statement that appeared to have been prepared in advance. It gives the impression that she had decided to stop the presentation even before it had begun.

Tweet by Hillel Neuer of UN Watch
The statements that Hillel Neuer quoted came from a report UN Watch issued earlier in the year highlighting the disturbing fact that more than 100 teachers and staff who work for the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) had made antisemitic posts on social media. Such behaviour is completely unacceptable for people supposed to be teaching Palestinian children in accordance with UN principles of tolerance and peace.

After his presentation was cut short, Hillel Neuer appealed on Twitter for the council president to apologise and rescind her ruling. Otherwise, he would call on the UN Secretary-General to publicly declare that, amongst other things, the quoting of antisemitic posts by UN teachers can in no way be characterised as ‘derogatory, insulting and inflammatory’ nor as ‘personal attacks.’

He is clearly concerned that the action taken at the UNHRC on Friday sent a dangerous message to the world by arbitrarily blocking him from presenting a report about antisemitism that is incited daily by UNRWA teachers.

Sadly, this incident seems to be just one more example of the extreme bias against Israel at the United Nations. The country is often singled out for condemnation and a level of scrutiny that far exceeds other countries which are known to have killed thousands of their own citizens.

Earlier this year, the UK Parliament was lobbied about the incitement contained in Palestinian textbooks. And more recently, an international group of more than 300 politicians made an appeal to end the systematic discrimination of Israel at the UN.