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UN Rapporteur Issues Indictment of Anti-Semitism

Israel Welcomes Precedent Setting Report

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Posted on: 
24 Sep 2019
UN Rapporteur Issues Indictment of Anti-Semitism
The United Nations on Monday released an interim report by Ahmed Shaheed, the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief. The report included a section on anti-Semitism, with Shaheed declaring that he says he is "alarmed by the growing use of antisemitic tropes by white supremacists including neo-Nazis and members of radical Islamist groups in slogans, images, stereotypes and conspiracy theories meant to incite and justify hostility, discrimination, and violence against Jews." The report also included almost unheard of criticism of the BDS movement, saying that "international law recognizes boycotts as constituting legitimate forms of political expression and that non-violent expressions of support for boycotts are, as a general matter, legitimate speech that should be protected." However, "expression which draws upon antisemitic tropes or stereotypes, rejects the right of Israel to exist, or advocates discrimination against Jewish individuals because of their religion should be condemned."

"The Special Rapporteur takes note of numerous reports of an increase in many countries of what is sometimes called 'left-wing' antisemitism, in which individuals claiming to hold anti-racist and anti-imperialist views employ antisemitic narratives or tropes in the course of expressing anger at policies or practices of the Government of Israel. In some cases, individuals expressing such views have engaged in Holocaust denial; in others, they have conflated Zionism, the self-determination movement of the Jewish people, with racism; claimed Israel does not have a right to exist and accused those expressing concern over antisemitism as acting in bad faith."

"The Special Rapporteur notes with serious concern that the frequency of antisemitic incidents appears to be increasing in magnitude in several countries where monitors attempt to document it, including online; and that the prevalence of antisemitic attitudes and the risk of violence against Jewish individuals and sites appear to be significant elsewhere, including countries with little or no Jewish population…the Special Rapporteur stresses that antisemitism if left unchecked by governments, poses risks not only to Jews but also to members of other minority communities. Antisemitism is toxic to democracy and mutual respect of citizens and threatens all societies in which it goes unchallenged."

"We welcome the release of this unprecedented report on the subject of Antisemitism," said Israel's ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon. "The report reflects the organizational change toward Israel. The assertion that the BDS movement encourages Antisemitism is an important UN statement. As I have said many times, Antisemitism has no place in our society, and must be denounced everywhere and from every platform."


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