Ki-moon condemns UN official over a 9/11 statement

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Ki-moon condemns UN official over a 9/11 statement

Al Arabiya News
Jan. 25, 2011

U.N.’s secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had condemned comments made by a U.N. Palestine expert Richard Falk that the U.S. government was behind the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Falk who is the Human Rights Council’s Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, has his remarks denounced by Ki-moon as “preposterous”.

Falk made the statement during the eve of a U.S. Congressional hearing into the U.N. Human Rights Council on Monday, Kuwait News Agency reported on Tuesday.

Ki-moon also said that Falk’s statement was an “affront to the memory of the more than 3,000 people who died in the attack.”

Hillel Neuer, Executive Director of the Geneva-based human rights group ‘U.N Watch,’ urged Ki-moon to fire Falk.

“We welcome the Secretary-General’s unequivocal condemnation of the despicable comments by this official of the U.N. Human Rights Council, and we urge Mr. Ban, together with U.N. rights chief Navi Pillay, to take the next logical step and call on Falk — who is a serial offender with zero credibility — to be removed,” said Neuer, who will be testifying at the Congressional hearing Tuesday in Washington.”

Ban’s Chef de Cabinet Vijay Nambiar said in a letter to Neuer that the U.N. Special Rapporteurs and other independent experts who represent the Human Rights Council “are appointed by the Council, not by the Secretary-General. Their continuance in their jobs is thus for the Council to decide.”

Nambiar also added that those experts, “however eminent they may be in their fields, have a clear responsibility to uphold the high standards of the United Nations and the Council.”

In June 2010 Neuer grilled Falk over his call to boycott Israel.

Falk is a Jewish American, and a professor emeritus of international law at Princeton University. He wrote and co-authored 20 books, and the editor or co-editor of another 20 books.