U.N. Human Rights Commissioner Unfairly Blames Israel, Gives Hamas A Pass
New York, NY, November 18, 2008 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) said the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights had "followed the lead of her predecessors" by unfairly putting the onus on Israel for humanitarian conditions in Gaza, while giving the Palestinian terrorist group that controls the territory a pass.
In a statement issued today, U.N. High Commissioner Navi Pillay called for an immediate end to the Israeli blockade of Gaza, saying that "…Palestinian men, women and children have been forcibly deprived of their most basic human rights for months." The commissioner's statement concluded with a brief sentence calling for an end to "Israeli incursions into Gaza and Palestinian rocket fire into Israel."
Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:
While the High Commissioner has only been in office a few months, she has followed the lead of her predecessors by focusing the blame on Israel for the complex situation in Gaza, while giving Hamas' deadly campaign against Israel and its totalitarian grip on Gazan society a pass.
The High Commissioner gives scant acknowledgement to Israel's great efforts to provide a flow of medical supplies, food and other necessities into Gaza. She fails to provide context or to acknowledge the complexity of the situation, including the constant barrage of rockets that have fallen on Israeli towns and cities since Hamas gained control of the territory 18 months ago. Over the past 10 days, Hamas has fired more than 100 rockets from Gaza into southern Israel, deliberately targeting Sderot, Ashkelon and other population centers.
It is unfortunate that an office charged with upholding the rights of all individuals consistently fails to acknowledge Israel's right to protect its citizens, or to provide context in this complex and difficult issue.
The Anti-Defamation League, founded in 1913, is the world's leading organization fighting anti-Semitism through programs and services that counteract hatred, prejudice and bigotry.