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Thursday, June 05, 2008

Jewish group to lose NGO status for 'insulting' 'Human Rights Council'?

The World Union for Progressive Judaism faces expulsion from its NGO status at the United Nations on Thursday because it 'insulted' the 'Human Rights Council' by reading from the Hamas charter at a session in Geneva in January. The Union has had NGO status at the UN since 1972.
Cuba requested the revocation of the union's status following a Human Rights Council session in Geneva in January titled "Human Rights Violations Emanating from Israeli Military Incursions in the Occupied Territories," where, in protest at the session's exclusive focus on Israel, World Union representative David Littman tried to read passages from the Hamas charter calling for the destruction of Israel.

Littman was interrupted three times by the presiding officer on the grounds that Hamas's ideology was not the topic before the council. Before he took his seat, Littman told the presiding officer that "something is rotten in the state of this council."

This statement led to complaints largely from Muslim countries that the UN had been insulted by the Reform representative. The World Union was informed of the initiative at the NGO committee last Thursday, and given a week to prepare its response.

Observer status allows an NGO's representatives to enter UN institutions, and observe and speak at its meetings.

Jewish organizations and Reform Movement representatives have been meeting with diplomats from the 19 countries on the NGO Committee in the past few days in an effort to convince them to reject the initiative.

But the World Union's prospects are uncertain. Sudan chairs the committee, which also includes Pakistan, Cuba, Egypt, Angola and Qatar. Committee members whom the World Union representatives hope to sway to their side include Burundi, China, Columbia, Dominica, Guinea, India, Peru, Romania, Russia and Turkey. The US, UK and Israel make up the last of the 19 members of the committee.
The United States government finances 22% of the United Nations' annual budget, including nonsense like this.

/And I never thought I would back the World Union of Progressive Judaism's position on anything.


At 7:08 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Carl - its funny how Reform Jews find their liberalism don't count for much before anti-Semites. Backing Israel at the UN can be hazardous to one's health.

At 8:21 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

It's like every day now we're hearing about these actions against "insults," our law schools should develop a new area of law specialization: "counter legal-jihad law" that would since specializing in constitutional law or criminal law or international law or human rights law doesn't cut it anymore, these legal jihadists are cutting across such specialties.

At 10:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If there is a single NGO member of the Human Rights Council, out of the hundreds that belong, that believes in justice and that is not anti semitic it would be refreshing if it surrendered its membership in that august assembly as a sign of its disapproval.
I will not hold my breath.


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