New York, NY, December 11, 2008 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) said today that the United Nations General Assembly President's continued expressions of bias toward Israel "calls into question his fitness to continue to serve in that capacity."
During a special U.N. session marking the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, General Assembly President Miguel d'Escoto Brockmann attempted to prevent Israel's permanent ambassador from speaking.
"President d'Escoto Brockmann's unacceptable behavior calls into question his fitness to continue to serve in that capacity," said Glen S. Lewy, ADL National Chair, and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director. "In his three months in office, President d'Escoto Brockmann has displayed unequivocal bias against Israel, with this incident being just the latest example."
In recent weeks, President d'Escoto Brockmann slandered Israel by calling it an "apartheid state" and accused Israel of "crucifying" the Palestinians, a clear allusion to the anti-Semitic charge of deicide against the Jewish people. He also failed to repudiate the anti-Semitic, anti-Israel speech delivered before the General Assembly by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
In a letter to U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, Mr. Lewy and Mr. Foxman said "President d'Escoto Brockmann's actions directly contradict the spirit and letter of the UN charter requirement of equal treatment of member-states."
The ADL leaders noted that the Secretary General has repeatedly committed to improving the environment for Israel at the United Nations, but said "President d'Escoto Brockmann has made a mockery of such efforts."
Israel's Ambassador to the U.N., Gabriella Shalev, was scheduled to speak as the current chairman of the Western European and Others Group (WEOG), along with the representatives of regional groups of the U.N. member states.