ADL to U.N.: Dismiss Official with Overt Bias Against Israel
New York, NY, October 15, 2004 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today called on United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan and High Commissioner for Human Rights Louise Arbour to immediately dismiss John Dugard, the U.N. Special Rapporteur for Human Rights, for his "clearly demonstrated bias against the State of Israel." Dugard is the author of the report, "Question of the violation of human rights in the occupied Arab territories, including Palestine," a copy of which was obtained by ADL, and is to be presented to the U.N. General Assembly in late October.
In the report, Dugard presents personal convictions as fact, and goes well beyond reporting to an incendiary call for action by the international community against Israel, writing "Israel's defiance of international law poses a threat not only to the international legal order but to the international order itself. This is no time for appeasement on the part of the international community."
"John Dugard has clearly demonstrated bias against the State of Israel, by using his official position as a U.N. fact-finder to present his personal anti-Israel views," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "For that we call on the Secretary General and the High Commissioner for Human Rights to immediately dismiss him." Mr. Foxman added that Dugard, who has a history of making incendiary statements about Israel in his official capacity, besmirches the U.N.'s declared fairness in dealing with the Israel-Palestinian conflict."
Dugard comprehensively presents as fact alleged Israeli human rights abuses against the Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank. There is little to no mention of Palestinian involvement in terrorism against Israel, of Palestinian arms smuggling tunnels, or rocket attacks against Israeli towns. In stark contrast, Israel's security considerations are ignored, or dismissed. Dugard further presents as fact his own views as to the underlying motivations for Israeli policy.
For example, Dugard rejects Israel's claim that its security barrier has been built to prevent infiltration by Palestinian suicide bombers, writing that "a more convincing explanation" is an Israeli intention to confiscate Palestinian land, incorporate settlers into Israeli borders, and to "encourage Palestinians to leave their lands and homes by making life intolerable for them."
He also presents as fact his opinion of Israel's plan to disengage from the Gaza Strip, stating "In reality, however, Israel does not plan to relinquish its grasp on the Gaza Strip."
Dugard refers to Israeli policy in the territories as apartheid, and on certain policies "beyond the scope of apartheid law."
This report is not the first time that Dugard has revealed his blatant bias against Israel. In May 2004, ADL wrote then-Acting High Commissioner for Human Rights Bertrand Ramcharan, expressing "strong concern" about Mr. Dugard's statements about Israel.
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.