New York, NY, February 1, 2013 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today strongly criticized a newly released U.N. Human Rights Council fact-finding report on the impact of Israeli settlements on the Palestinians, stating that the purpose of the report was “illegitimate in its conception,” and “another clear example of the HRC’s institutionalized extreme anti-Israeli bias.”
The report, which was presented on Thursday and will debated by the HRC in March, was based on the findings of the council’s appointed commission whose impartiality ADL had questioned last year.
Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:
The recent HRC report is another clear example of the body’s institutionalized extreme anti-Israeli bias, and only serves to further discredit the council. The findings of the report, couched in terms of presumed Israeli guilt, confirm that its purpose was illegitimate in its conception. The so-called fact-finding commission chose its own facts and found precisely what the anti-Israel crowd on the HRC wanted them to find. The report, like a long list of others before it, further validates Israel’s decision to distance itself from this biased U.N. body.
A number of accusations brought by the commission are outlandish and without merit, and many echo incendiary comments made by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during his recent U.N. speeches. These include charges that Israel is actively seeking to erase the non-Jewish connection to religious sites in Jerusalem and Hebron, and that violence by settlers toward Palestinians is being carried out in collusion with the Israeli government.
The report’s recommendations are even more problematic. Demanding that Israel immediately withdraw all settlers from the West Bank is unrealistic and outside the framework of the Quartet’s Roadmap. Calling on private companies and governments to terminate all their business interests in the settlements – a position reflecting the views of the notoriously anti-Israel figure Richard Falk – is an inherently one-sided and counter-productive measure.
Instead of offering practical solutions to help bring the Israelis and Palestinians back to negotiations, the report’s recommendations only further push away the prospects for peace.