U.S. ambassador demands UN withdraw report calling Israel ‘apartheid’ state

by WorldTribune Staff, March 16, 2017

The U.S. ambassador to the UN said a report by an anti-Israel scholar that labels Israel an “apartheid” state should be withdrawn immediately.

Richard Falk, former UN Special Rapporteur for the Palestinian territories, submitted the report to the UN on March 15. The report accused Israel of being “guilty of the crime of apartheid.”

Richard Falk. /Reuters

“The United States stands with our ally Israel and will continue to oppose biased and anti-Israel actions across the UN system and around the world,” U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley said.

Falk’s report, commissioned by the U.N Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia, said Israel’s policies today meet the definition of “an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination” by one racial group over another.

“Aware of the seriousness of this allegation, the authors of the report conclude that available evidence establishes beyond a reasonable doubt that Israel is guilty of policies and practices that constitute the crime of apartheid as legally defined in instruments of international law,” the report said.

The report called on UN member states to act against Israel and “broaden support for boycott, divestment and sanctions initiatives among civil society actors.”

Haley responded: “That it was drafted by Richard Falk, a man who has repeatedly made biased and deeply offensive comments about Israel and espoused ridiculous conspiracy theories, including about the 9/11 terrorist attacks, is equally unsurprising,” Haley said. “The United Nations Secretariat was right to distance itself from this report, but it must go further and withdraw the report altogether.”

Falk repeatedly has questioned what he calls “the official version of 9/11.” In 2013, he told a radio show host about “gaps” in the standard 9/11 narrative.

“Questioning that deeply the official version of 9/11 does touch the third rail of American political sensitivities, and there is an attempt to discredit and destroy anyone that makes such a bold statement,” Falk, who lives in the U.S., said.

A spokeswoman for U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told Fox News that the report does not reflect Guterres’ views.

“It was published by the Economic Commission for Western Asia, a regional UN economic commission, without prior consultation with UN headquarters,” the spokeswoman said.

The Israeli ambassador to the UN slammed the report’s conclusion as “biased and deceitful.”

“The attempt to smear and falsely label the only true democracy in the Middle East by creating a false analogy is despicable and constitutes a blatant lie,” Ambassador Danny Danon said. “It comes as no surprise that an organization headed by an individual who has called for boycotts against Israel, and compared our democracy to the most terrible regimes of the 20th century, would publish such a report.”

Earlier this year, Falk said Trump’s inauguration led him to “muse about what it might mean to live in a pre-fascist state.”

The Trump administration is considering a 50 percent cut in U.S. funding for UN programs, Foreign Policy magazine reported on March 14.