Issue 180: The Durban II Debates on Video: UN Watch’s Hillel Neuer on Al Jazeera With Riz Khan

 

The Durban II Debates on Video: UN Watch’s Hillel Neuer on Al Jazeera With Riz Khan

New York, Sept. 24, 2008 — In the first major TV debate on the UN’s upcoming Durban II racism conference, UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer said, “the world’s most intolerant and repressive regimes are subverting human rights and the struggle against racism.” Debating Neuer from London was Islamic Human Rights Commission Chair Massoud Shadjareh, a self-described anti-Zionist who led controversial demonstrations at the original Durban conference in 2001. Click here to watch video of the debate.

Swiss FM Calmy-Rey: All Must Consider “Sitting Down with Osama Bin Laden”

In a speech delivered to the annual assembly of her diplomatic corps, Swiss Foreign Minister Calmy-Rey, a founder of the UN Human Rights Council, said that one of the questions that every country has to ask is, “[S]hould we seek dialogue without discrimination — even if it means sitting down with Osama Bin Laden?”

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UN Watch Quoted in Leading Media Around the World (August/September 2008)

Why is the commissioner aiming her fire at the world’s most tolerant democracies, instead of at racist tyrants like Sudan’s Omar al-Bashir and Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad who, under the chairmanship of Muammar Qaddafi’s Libya, have already begun to hijack the conference?’ asked UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer.” — “Pilay urges states to take part in anti-racism conference,” The Press Trust of India, Sept. 9, 2008.

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Navi Pillay tire dans la mauvaise direction’, a réagi l’ONG ‘UN Watch’. Et de se demander pourquoi la Haut Commissaire ne critique pas plutôt l’attitude du Soudan, de l’Iran et de la Libye ‘qui ont commencé à détourner la conférence’ de ses buts…” —  “Reprise du Conseil des droits de l’homme Navi Pillay veut sauver la conférence de Genève contre le racisme,” Schweizerische Depeschenagentur AG, service de base francais, Sept 9, 2008.

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“The threat of Western non-participation remains the only force with the slightest chance of preventing the conference from degenerating into an out-and-out fiasco…”  H. Neuer quoted in “UN rights official urge US, Canada, Israel to join anti-racism meeting,” Agence France Presse, Sept. 8, 2008.

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“The threat of Western non-participation remains the only force with the slightest chance of preventing the conference (Durban-2) from degenerating into an out-and-out fiasco…”  H. Neuer quoted in L. Maclnnis “New UN human rights chief calls for racism debate,” Reuters, Sept. 9, 2008.

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 “…Ms. Pillay must denounce the proposal adopted last week by African states in Nigeria that attacks free speech, singles out Israel, and endorses a text calling for the elimination of Zionism and comparing it to apartheid…” — H. Neuer quoted in B. Avni, “Planned Conference on Racism Raises Concerns at the U.N.,’” The New York Sun, Sept. 5, 2008.

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 “Haute Commissaire Pillay a exhorté tous les Etats à participer à la Conférence d’avril, même ceux qui ont exprimé leur volonté de ne pas le faire. Cette déclaration a suscité l’ire d’UN Watch. L’ONG ne comprend pas pourquoi Navanetham Pillay fait allusion aux démocraties telles que le Canada, les Etats-Unis et Israël qui ont déjà promis de boycotter le sommet genevois. Pour UN Watch, la haut-commissaire se trompe de cible et devrait plutôt fustiger l’attitude d’Etats comme le Soudan ou l’Iran…” — “Droits humains: ce qui attend la haut-commissaire,” Le Temps, Sept. 9, 2008.

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“…More recently we were informed by Hillel Neuer, UN Watch executive director, and one of Canada’s unsung heroes, that a declaration adopted on Aug. 26, 2008, by an African regional meeting in Abuja, Nigeria, ‘fails to address racial and ethnic crimes committed by Sudan, tramples international human rights guarantees on free speech, places Islam above all other religions, and targets Israel alone, implying that it is uniquely racist.’  N. Emmanuel, “Darfur: Two Measures for Muslim Corpses,” The Suburban, Sept. 3, 2008.

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“…Pillay müsse ihr Amt vor allem dazu nutzen, politische Aufmerksamkeit auf die weltweit größten Menschenrechtsverletzungen im Sudan, in Burma, China und Simbabwe zu lenken, forderte die Organisation UN Watch nach der Ernennung der Südafrikanerin im Juli…”  UN Watch cited in “Neue UN-Kommissarin für Menschenrechte,” Kurier (Austria), Sept. 2, 2008.

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 “…The UN watch report on former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Arbour calls on the new Commissioner use her ‘bully pulpit’ to promote human rights everywhere. With a staff of almost a thousand and an annual budget (from the UN budget and donations) of  $150 million, her office is a well-appointed pulpit, but the fact remains that her only weapon is persuasion. …”  “Human rights at the UN,” Oxford Analytica, Aug. 30 – Sept. 5, 2008.

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Portraying Israel’s conflict as racial is more than political mischief…It’s an attempt to dehumanize Israelis and their supporters as uniquely evil’…” — H. Neuer quoted in P. Goodenough, “African States Want to Condemn Israel While Ignoring Darfur,” CNS News, Aug. 29, 2008.

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“…« La déclaration ne fait pas mention des crimes raciaux et ethniques commis au Soudan, piétine les droits internationaux garantissant la liberté d’expression, place l’Islam à une position supérieure aux autres religions et vise Israël comme étant un pays raciste » rapporte Hillel Neuer, directeur de l’organisation UN Watch, qui promeut les Droits de l’Hommes à travers le monde…” Guysen International, “Durban II, le retour!”, Aug. 27, 2008.

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“All of these African victims, and millions more in the future, are harmed by the [African Durban preparatory] conference’s failure to ensure accountability for crimes committed in African countries,’ said Hillel Neuer, executive director of Geneva-based UN Watch.…”  “Africa states to raise Palestinian issue at UN forum,” Reuters, Aug. 26, 2008.

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“…The text [the declaration adopted by an African regional meeting] according to UN-Watch’s executive director Hillel Neuer, ‘flouts international human rights principles, and breaches the red lines set by France, Britain, the Netherlands, and other Western states, which they have warned could trigger their boycott of the 2009 meeting in Geneva’.…”  “Africa wants racism, xenophobia to be criminalized,” Agence France Presse, Aug. 26, 2008. Also published in The Herald (Zimbabwe).

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“…UN Watch, a Geneva- based independent human rights group that is actively participating as an international non-governmental organisation at the current African Regional Conference in Abuja, Nigeria, is deeply concerned that the draft declaration set for adoption later yesterday threatens to derail this year’s UN follow-up to the 2009 world conference in racism…”  “African Meeting in Nigeria Threatens To Derail World Conference,” Leadership (Nigerian Newspaper), Aug. 26, 2008.

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“A draft document circulating at the United Nations suggests human rights violators will get off the hook at the upcoming Durban II anti-racism conference in Geneva while Israel will again come in for special opprobrium, and the West – including its fundamental respect for free speech – will come under attack, said Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch…” — “Durban II prep conference called a concern,” The Canadian Jewish News, Sept. 18, 2008.

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“…«Navi Pillay tire dans la mauvaise direction», a réagi l’ONG «UN Watch». Et de se demander pourquoi la haut-commissaire ne critique pas plutôt l’attitude du Soudan, de l’Iran et de la Libye «qui ont commencé à détourner la conférence» de ses buts.…” — H. Neuer quoted in “Conférence sur le racisme: le premier défi de Navi Pillay,” La Tribune de Genève, Sept. 15, 2008.

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 Response of the Spokesman of Swiss Foreign Minister Calmy-Rey to Hillel Neuer’s July 14th Op-Ed “Who will guard human rights at the UN?” — Letter to the Editor, Jerusalem Post, Aug. 18, 2008.

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