GENEVA, October 8, 2013 – UN rights chief Navi Pillay will headline a controversial Geneva ceremony today featuring a terrorism sympathizer as one three final nominees for what is billed as the world’s top human rights prize.
In a letter to High Commissioner Pillay, the non-governmental group UN Watch urged her to make clear that she condemns the repeated statements by nominee Mona Seif that opposed calls by Amnesty and Human Rights Watch for Hamas to stop rocket attacks on civilians, which she justified as “resistance.”
8 October 2013
Dear High Commissioner Pillay,
I urge you, as the person giving out tonight’s Martin Ennal Award, to make clear your opposition to the violence and terrorism advocated by Final Nominee Mona Seif.
Mona Seif was nominated specifically for her tweets. Yet her tweets also say the following:
- On July 6, 2011, Ms. Seif advocated the blowing up of pipelines exporting Egyptian gas to Israel. She praised those who commit such crimes as “heroes.” Many have been killed and injured in violence connected to Egyptian police efforts to stop these attacks.
- On November 6, 2012, Ms. Seif endorsed Al Qassam Brigades attacks on civilians. On that day, Amnesty International tweeted a “Demand that @netanyahu & @AlqassamBrigade stop attacks on civilians.” Ms. Seif publicly rejected the call, writing:“you don’t ask an occupied nation to stop their “Resistance” to end violence!!! SHAME ON YOU!”
- On November 20, 2012, Ms. Seif endorsed the arming of Gaza terrorist groups. On that day, Amnesty International tweeted: “Stop the madness! Share this image if you want an arms embargo on all sides #Israel#Hamas #Gaza.” The image showed innocent civilians in Israel andGaza. Seif responded: “@amnesty & @hrw r leading a shameful campaign asking Palestinians under occupation & non stop air strikes 2 stop their resistance!”
In other words, Ms. Seif not only engaged in public incitement to the blowing up of pipelines, but attacked calls to end violence against Israeli civilians as “shameful.” In endorsing the actions of the Al Qassam Brigades, she was effectively advocating, supporting and legitimizing attacks such as their launch of Fajr 5 missiles at the city of Tel Aviv.
Concerning Israelis, Mona Seif has glorified violence, blood, and martyrdom:
- On March 19, 2012, Mona Seif tweeted:“Palestineis my way and I am full of determination and will. I will draw my blood in the West Bank, I will fight to my death in Gaza, in Bethlehem I will strengthen my people, and in Jerusalem I will achieve martyrdom…”
- On March 22, 2012, Mona Seif tweeted:“A day will yet come when I will join the resistance and participate in the intifada. Palestine is my way, and I am full of determination and will. I will draw my blood in the West Bank; I will fight to my death in Gaza…”
The United Nations Charter is dedicated to the promotion of peace. Mona Seif seeks to violently destroy peace. Unless you clarify your opposition to her many statements supporting violence, your presence tonight is liable to send a terrible message.
As a Princeton college student wrote:“Human-rights organizations should be at the forefront of advancing egalitarian ideals. This means withholding international human rights awards from activists, like Ms. Seif, who have publicly voiced blatantly violent views.”
We urge you to condemn Mona Seif’s statements that violate the right to life, oppose peace and support terrorism.
Hillel C. Neuer