UN body threatens to boycott leading Israeli telecommunications company

The UN Human Rights Council wants to boycott Bezeq, Israel’s leading telecommunications provider, because it services Jewish communities in Judea, Samaria and eastern Jerusalem.

The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) has threatened to blacklist Bezeq, Israel’s most prominent telecommunications corporation, because the company provides services to Israeli communities in Judea, Samaria and eastern Jerusalem.

In a Facebook post Monday, Bezeq CEO Stella Handler said the company would not collaborate with what which she called “nothing more than anti-Israel propaganda.”

“Bezeq will continue to protect the rights of all our customers without discrimination. We will continue to provide service to all Israeli citizens without respect to religion, race or gender and we respect their right to choose to live in any part of this land – be it Raanana, Jerusalem, Ariel, Sakhnin or Ma’aleh Adumim.”

UNHRC Uses ‘Illegitimate Pressure to Head-Butt Israel’

Handler said attempts to blacklist Israeli companies were nothing other than “illegitimate pressure to ‘head-butt’ Israel.”

Bedouin women work at Bezeq

Israeli bedouin women seen working at a Bezeq customer service center, located in a mosque, in the Southern Israeli Arab town of Hurra. (Miriam Alster/Flash90)

The Bezeq CEO posted a copy of a September 22 letter, signed by Mohammed Ali Alnsour, chief of the UNHRC Middle East and North Africa Section, saying the Council had undertaken efforts to create a database “of business enterprises that have engaged in certain activities in relation to Israeli settlement activity in the ‘occupied Palestinian territory.’”

Alnsour added that “Bezeq appears to be engaged in “the provision of services and utilities supporting the maintenance and existence of settlements” and “the use of natural resources, in particular water and land, for business purposes.”

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Responding to the letter, Handler cited UNHRC statistics vis-à-vis Israel, saying that more than half of the Council’s resolutions since being formed have denounced Israel.

“Since the Council was formed in 2006, 68 decisions have been published denouncing Israel – not North Korea, not Syria, not Sudan, not Yemen. No other country has gotten this sort of attention from the Human Rights Council. The [Council’s] anti-Israel bias is so blatant that it has lost any relevance in the world,” Handler wrote.

By: Andrew Friedman/TPS