The US boycotted a session at the UNHRC focused solely on Israel’s alleged human rights abuses, demanding that it reform.
The US expressed “strong and unequivocal” opposition to the United Nations Human Rights Council’s (UNHRC) anti-Israel Item Seven General Debate and boycotted a session on the issue on Monday.
Agenda Item Seven, “Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories,” is a permanent UNHRC agenda item that mandates discussion on any alleged Israeli human rights abuses against Palestinians. It is debated three times a year.
For the last four years, Israel has asked countries to boycott the debate on the agenda item. In the past, some Western states have participated in the debate, including a few European nations. The US has always boycotted the Agenda Item Seven debate.
“Today’s actions in the Council are yet another reminder of that body’s longstanding bias against Israel,” the State Department said in a statement. “No other nation has an entire agenda item dedicated to it at the Council. The continued existence of this agenda item is among the largest threats to the credibility of the Council.”
The US was expressing its “deeply-held conviction” that the bias against Israel “must be addressed in order for the Council to realize its legitimate purpose.”
“It does not serve the interests of the Council to single out one country in an unbalanced matter, the statement added.
As a further sanction, the US will vote against every resolution put forth under this agenda item “and is encouraging other countries to do the same.”
The US is dedicated to “the pursuit of respect for international human rights by all countries in the world” and calls on all UN member states and international partners “who are committed to human rights” to help pursue “much needed reforms in the UN Human Rights Council.”
The US is reportedly considering abandoning the UNHRC over its blatant anti-Israel agenda.
The UNHRC’s Skewed Anti-Israel Agenda
American envoy Erin Barclay told the UNHRC earlier this month that Washington was considering its future engagement with the Council “with an eye toward reform,” saying that its “obsession with Israel” threatens the Council’s reliability.
“In order for this Council to have any credibility, let alone success, it must move away from its unbalanced and unproductive positions,” she stated.
The US contributes 22 percent of the UN’s budget, and has been discussing whether to cut back some of the funding.
The UNHRC is infamously biased against Israel, with nearly half of its resolutions focused solely on Israel while it ignores war, strife and atrocities committed around the globe. Israeli leaders and officials have cited the UNHRC for its “obsessive hostility” toward Israel and its “one-sided mandate.”
Over the past 10 years, the UNHRC has passed 62 resolutions condemning Israel. Meanwhile, the world’s worst human rights abusers in Syria, Iran, and North Korea received far fewer condemnations.
“The UN Human Rights Council has turned harming Israel into its raison d’etre. The time has come to end to this shameful, and even embarrassing, chapter in the history of the UN. Members of the Council must put an end to the bias in this absurd body,” Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon stated.
By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News