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International Affairs  
Dateline Durban: U.N. World Conference Against Racism

Background on Anti-Zionism at the U.N

The United Nations has been a forum for unrelenting attacks on Israel and Jewish nationalism. Draft language up for adoption at the U.N. Conference brands Israel's "occupation" as a "crime against humanity" and revives the charge of Zionism as a "movement which is based on racial superiority."

In 1975, the General Assembly, by a vote of 89 to 67, passed a resolution declaring that "Zionism is a form of racism." That resolution sat on the books until 1991 when it was revoked by a vote of 87 to 25.

The 1975 resolution was aimed at denying Israel its political legitimacy by attacking its moral basis for existence. The resolution was used for decades by Arab and many third world countries as a way to attack Israelís international standing. Each year a campaign was launched to deny Israel its U.N. credentials and to expel Israel from international agencies.

Although this hostility began to wane at the outset of the Israeli-Arab peace process in the early 1990s, today the U.N. still has not completely normalized its relations with the Jewish state. For more information on the history of this relationship, see the League backgrounder, Israel and the United Nations.

There remain, from the last recorded vote, at least 25 states that maintain the position that Zionism is a form of racism. That formulation was a conscious attempt to de-legitimize Israel and to deny the Jewish people their right to self-determination.

Reports from Durban Conference
Durban Update: Final Declaration Recognizes Palestinian Right of Return; Omits Language Critical of Israel (09/8/01)
Durban Update: Parties Deadlocked on Mideast (09/07/01)
Conference Continues Without U.S. and Israel (09/05/01)
Anti-Jewish, Anti-Israel Language Prompts U.S., Israel to Leave U.N. Conference (09/04/01)
Opening Day of the UN World Conference On Racism (08/31/01)
Anti-Israel Hecklers Interrupt Press Conference (08/30/01)
Anti-Israel Rhetoric Prevalent at the U.N. World Conference Against Racism (08/29/01)
Background on
Durban Conference
About the UN World Conference Against Racism
ADL Call to Conscience for All Nations
Background on Anti-Zionism at the United Nations
What is Zionism?
World Figures Refute the Zionism=Racism Charge
The Draft Declaration: Unfair Charges of Racism Against Israel
ADL Statements on Durban
ADL Letters to Media about the U.N. World Conference
Durban Derailed into a Conference of Hate
Abraham H. Foxman on the Durban Conference
Press Releases:

ADL Commends U.S. Rejection of Anti-Jewish, Anti-Israel Bias of U.N. Conference Against Racism (8/27/01)

ADL Urges Congress To Reject Incendiary Language Against Jews, Israel At Upcoming U.N. Conference Against Racism (7/31/01)

ADL Urges Foreign Ministers to Reject Anti-Jewish Rhetoric at U.N. Conference on Racism (7/17/01)

ADL Urges U.N. Members to Reject Anti-Israel Focus at Forum Against Racism (5/18/01)

Letters:
ADL to President George W.Bush

ADL to Foreign Ministers of U.N. Members

Resources
Related ADL Articles:
Israel and the UN

Related Web Sites:
UN World Conference Against Racism

The United Nations
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