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WHAT WE DO - Human Rights

B'nai B'rith protects Israel, quotes violations perpetrated by Iran at the 13th session of the Council of Human Rights at the U.N.
Report by Jacques Jacubert.

B'nai B'rith International (BBI) sent its annual delegation to the UN in Geneva on the 3rd week of March 2010 for the Council of Human Rights, organized many meetings with VIP and made a few official declarations…

The multinational delegation which was directed by Senior Vice-President Yves Kamami (that included for France: Joelle Perelberg, Olivier Lewin and Jacques Jacubert) and by Klaus Netter, a permanent representative in Geneva, met with many diplomats including the New American Ambassador from France, Italy, Germany and Canada.

The meetings have been organized in order to examine the unbalanced report of the mission inquiring on the Gaza conflict known as the Goldstone report, the most anti Israeli point n°7 permanent on the agenda of the Council and the need of a special reporter on the violations of Human Rights in Iran.

The discussions are a key element of the efforts B'nai B'rith International is making in order to defend Israel at the Council. According to Yves Kamami, the different ambassadors that we ever met are nearly all convinced that it was necessary to change the organization of Human Rights so that there would be more room for the countries that make it a point to respect them.

As Ahmadinejhad came along to Durban, he left his marks in the minds. The different people we have been talking to are all worried. They think that it will be most difficult for democracies that respect human rights to go along, today, with many autocratic examples.

The possible changes could even let totalitarian countries grow larger. For instance, one of the still vivacious traumas happened when the U.N. was criticizing Israel about Gaza. Silence was kept about tens of thousands of people killed in Sri Lanka just because some Asian countries would feel uncomfortable about it.

Apart from that, Klaus Netter intervened three times when the Council was dealing with Iran: the devilish behavior against Israel and the efforts of some countries to turn some critical or blasphemous expressions into defamation of religion.

The declaration on defamation of religion delivered on March 15 expresses B'nai B'rith's deep concern about the Resolutions on this subject at the general meeting of the UN and the Council of Human Rights.

"In the name of a community that deeply respects the faith and the right to freely practice its religion without any threat of violence, said Klaus Netter, in the name of B'nai B'rith International and of the Committee of Coordination of Jewish Organizations, we strongly demand to stop all kinds of efforts to misuse the Council of Human Rights. Violations of universal human rights and of freedom of speech does not spell "defamation of religion".

On March 16, B'nai B'rith made it a point to recall how the situation of human rights is so urgent in Iran that it is high time to nominate a special reporter.

Last year, just after the election in Iran, it could be seen with half an eye that the Iranian government is behaving like a tyrant. At a time when the entire world kept watching, the Iranian Government brutally suppressed freedom of speech and forbade peaceful demonstration. Members of the opposition were arrested on groundless reasons and, in many cases, submitted to physical and psychological torture.

On March 22, at the Council, the B'nai B'rith mission in Geneva declared that Israel kept being accused on empty grounds. In the name of B'nai B'rith and the Council of Coordination of Jewish Organizations, Klaus Netter enumerated the numberless resolutions censuring Israel that had been easily adopted by the well organized majority that dominates this Council.

B'nai B'rith and the Council also asked that the different review tasks in 2011 be used by the General Assembly of the U.N on the future of the Council of Human Rights of Falk, the special reporter of the Palestinian question, to be dismissed because of his patent partiality in favor of the Palestinian question- which makes his records totally unreliable.

B'nai B'rith is determined to reform the Council of Human Rights after the never heard of vote against Israel dealing with reparations due to Palestinians.

Although B'nai B'rith International and other nongovernmental organizations kept asking for a drastic change in the way Israel is treated, the Council for Human Rights went on adopting anti-Israel resolutions. This was a blatant injustice. Thanks to its staff in the U.N in New York and Geneva, BBI is doing its best to put an end to the relentless attacks of the Council against Israel.

On March 24, the Council adopted four resolutions within point 7 of the day, which is the one and only permanent post dedicated to one given country, Israel, systematically and unjustly attacked.

On March 25, the Council adopted another resolution asking for reparations only for the Palestinians that had suffered during the war with Israel. It also created a committee of "independent experts" to see that the demands of the Goldstone Mission be fulfilled. It does not enable Israel to start an efficient counterterrorism. Apart from this, it keeps asking for the creation of an exceptional conference on the Conventions of Geneva where the Israeli violations will be at the very center.

"We are aware that the Council for Human Rights plays a difficult role in order to make vital causes work against violations and atrocities of human rights and we are very sad to see that the Council took the wrong way" said the B'nai B'rith International President Dennis W. Glick. "But as long as the Council will not give up being obsessed by attacks against the one and only democracy looking for peace, it will prove impossible to make any progress. We shall keep on working at the Council of Human Rights in order to try to lead it away from these shameful and unjust resolutions aiming to undermine the international reputation of Israel".

According to Daniel S. Mariaschin :"The Council has always remained being led by its own discriminatory policy. Those who stand behind the State of Israel should be most worried. All these attacks delegitimize the Council itself and keep away from working towards real stability and reconciliation in the Middle East.

B'nai B'rith International kept being active at the UN since it has been founded and will go on being impartial.

After adopting the five anti-Israeli resolutions, Klaus Netter told us:

" As we had previously foreseen, all the five anti-Israeli resolutions have been adopted but with some quite different majorities. The US stood against all the resolutions. Sometimes they were the only ones".

The resolution on the Golan (L.2) has been adopted with 31 yes, 1 no and 15 abstentions, among them: Cameroun and Gabon.

The resolution on the Palestinian auto determination (L.27) has been massively adopted by 45 yes. The US voted no and no abstention was recorded.

In the same way, the resolution on the colonies (L.28) has been adopted with 46 yes. The US alone voted no and there was no abstention.

The resolutions on the "severe violations of Human Rights in the Palestinian occupied territories was adopted by 31 yes, 9 no and 7 abstentions including Burkina Faso and Cameroun.

The most important was the resolution given to the Goldstone report (L.30). The result was only 29 yes, 6 no and 11 abstentions (including Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Chile, Madagascar and Mexico).

This resolution needs an additional commission of independent experts chosen by the High Commissariat (the members of the Goldstone Commission have been chosen by the President of the Council) "in order to watch and give an evaluation of the procedures and actions taken by both sides including independence, efficiency, authenticity of the requested inquiries and their conformity with international rules

"The Commission must write down a report at the Council session of September. One paragraph has been particularly criticized because of its unilateral character even by some countries which stood for the resolution. It is one that asked the Council to examine and determine the appropriate modes for creating a depository for compensations to Palestinians that lost property after the illegal acts of the State of Israel during the military operations that happened from December 2008 to January 2009.

Many western countries criticized the confusion created by joining this resolution to the resolution of the general Assembly asking both parties to write down a report to the General Assembly before the end of July.

To my knowledge, it is worthwhile to write down the number of African countries that emerged from the majority of the ICO (Islamic Countries Organization). This should lead us into intensifying our efforts of lobbying with the African non-Islamist or partly- Islamist countries.

This brings an end to Klaus Netter's declaration.

It is noteworthy to note that an unacceptable document has been presented as an official document during that 13th session. This document is A/HRC/13/NGO/23. Its title is "illegal Israeli traffic of organs coming from corpses and from kidnapped Palestinian victims.

"It has been presented by the International Organization for eliminating any forms of racial discrimination. As can be seen on its site (http://www.eaford.org), the organism accepted by the UN has one and only goal: to accuse Israel of being a racist State. (The site presents, as well, a video showing the action of the US in Iraq as a real holocaust.)

At the start, the declaration accuses Israel of committing ethnic cleansing and massacres. It thus creates the biggest prison under an open sky. It perpetrates an economic genocide and it gives full privilege to hordes of illegal Israeli settlers to start pogroms against Palestinians.

"Now, the Israelis have kidnapped and killed Palestinians. As reported in the press, they sell their human organs on the illegal world market and they make a tremendous amount of money out of it. Israeli M.D., medical centers, rabbis and the Israeli Army are implicated as we can read in the Swedish press and the criminal inquiries in the US."

The declaration goes on. After the Israeli M.D. remove organs that may be negotiable, the soldiers bury the corpses into tombs marked only with numbers and nameless or put them into sealed caskets that are delivered to the families. They go on watching the tombs and the funerals.

At the end, medical doctors, medical centers and associations from all over the world are asked to condemn and boycott the Israeli M.D. and medical centers.

In order to fight against this type of declaration and for Human Rights, B'nai B'rith International has been active in the UN since it has been founded and will go on working unbiased.