UN Watch was quoted in multiple media outlets during May 2022 on topics including: Russian diplomat Boris Bondarev’s resigns; UN rapporteur accepts an award from the PLO; UN rights envoy receives $200,000 from China; Czech Republic joins the Human Rights Council; North Korea chairs the UN Conference on Disarmament.
The UN’s Demonization of Israel
Interviewed on i24 News, May 4, 2022:
Laura Cellier, i24 News: Do you have a theory as to why that is, why Israel is singled out when other countries aren’t?
Hillel Neuer: There’s realpolitik. There are 56 Muslim states; historically, they have sponsored these resolutions. Yes, there’s the Abraham Accords, but hasn’t yet changed things at the UN in a significant way. 56 Muslim states voting against Israel; they have an enormous amount of oil, they have UN votes — the UN works by vote trading — so there’s 56 votes for your country if you vote for the anti-Israel resolution, versus one vote from Israel if you vote no.
And I would say there’s also residual antisemitism. The fact that, of all the countries in the world, it is only the Jewish state — and you go across the board at the UN: the General Assembly, World Health Organization, the Human Rights Council — one country gets singled out and demonized. It’s the Jewish state.
UN Rapporteur Michael Lynk Accepts PLO Award
Quoted in the Times of Israel, “Outgoing UN rapporteur accepts Palestinian Authority award,” May 9, 2022:
Michael Lynk, the UN Special Rapporteur on Palestine until last week, has been awarded the Order of the Star of Jerusalem by the Palestinian Authority.
Lynk was given the award in Dublin by Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Al Malki.
The NGO UN Watch protests the move, saying Lynk is violating UN neutrality rules.
“For the past six years, we documented how Lynk was acting not like an impartial UN investigator, but rather like an agent for the PLO,” says Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch. “He turned a blind eye to Hamas and Fatah terrorism, and demonized Israel. Lynk insisted he was impartial, but now he isn’t even pretending any more.
“It is repulsive that Lynk accepted this award from [PA President] Mahmoud Abbas at a time when his Fatah group participated in and praised the latest spate of Palestinian terrorist attacks that have killed 19 people in Israel.”
Czech Republic Joins UN Human Rights Council
Quoted in the Jerusalem Post, “The Czech Republic replaces Russia on the UNHRC,” May 11, 2022:
The Czech Republic, which has a strong history of supporting Israel, has replaced Russia on the 47-member UN Human Rights Council.
The move comes in advance of the UNHRC’s 50th session that opens in June, when it is expected to receive its first report from the open-ended Commission of Inquiry against Israel.
The Czech Republic has opposed the commission, voting against its creation last year, while Russia supported it. Hillel Neuer, executive director of the Geneva-based NGO UN Watch, said that “the Czech Republic has the strongest record in Europe in opposing anti-Israeli hatred.”
UN Rights Envoy Takes $200,000 From China
Quoted by AFP, “UN expert Alena Douhan slammed over US$200,000 contribution from China,” May 20, 2022:
Alena Douhan, the United Nations special rapporteur focused on the negative impact of unilateral sanctions, received a US$200,000-contribution from Beijing in 2021, Geneva-based rights group UN Watch said, pointing to a UN filing.
In a statement, the group called on her “to return US$200,000 that she received from the Chinese state while she helped the regime whitewash its ethnic cleansing of the Uyghurs”.
Quoted in the National Review, “China, Russia Contributed Funding to U.N.’s Pro-Dictator Rapporteur,” May 19, 2022:
The revelations about the Chinese and Russian funding came in an annual report issued by the UN’s High Commissioner for Human Rights about the dozens of independent human rights experts who each focus on a specific human rights issue. That report was issued in March, but Douhan’s funding came to widespread attention only after the watchdog group UN Watch publicized it this week, attacking Douhan for her consistent efforts to exonerate brutal dictatorships for their activities.
UN Watch called on Douhan to return China’s funding, and said the payment was linked to a round of US and allied sanctions targeting Chinese officials for the genocide of Uyghurs in 2021.
“It is clear that China is now willing to pay unprecedented sums of money to influence Alena Douhan’s UN human rights office, in wake of last year’s decision by the US, EU, UK and Canada to announce sanctions on China for its persecution of the Uyghurs,” said the group’s director, Hillel Neuer, in a statement.
Russian Diplomat Boris Bondarev Resigns
Quoted in the Washington Post, “‘Ashamed’ Russian diplomat resigns over Putin’s ‘aggressive war,’” May 23, 2022:
“Boris Bondarev is a hero,” said Hillel Neuer, executive director of U.N. Watch, a Geneva-based nongovernmental organization, who circulated a copy of the Russian diplomat’s letter on Twitter. “We are now calling on all other Russian diplomats at the United Nations—and worldwide—to follow his moral example and resign.”
Quoted by the AP, “‘Never have I been so ashamed’: Russian envoy criticizes war,” May 23, 2022:
Hiller Neuer, executive director of the advocacy group U.N. Watch, tweeted a copy of Bondarev’s letter and said simply: “Boris Bondarev is a hero.”
“Bondarev should be invited to speak in Davos this week,” he added, referring to the World Economic Forum’s annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland. “The U.S., the U.K. and the (European Union) should lead the free world in creating a program to encourage more Russian diplomats to follow and defect, by providing protection, financial security and resettlement for diplomats and their families.”
Quoted in the Guardian, “‘Warmongering, lies and hatred’: Russian diplomat in Geneva resigns over Ukraine invasion,” May 23, 2022:
Hillel Neuer, the executive director of the Geneva-based human rights organisation UN Watch, called Bondarev a “hero”.
“We are now calling on all other Russian diplomats at the United Nations – and worldwide – to follow his moral example and resign,” he said.
Neuer also called for Bondarev to be allowed to speak at this week’s Davos forum, a gathering of the world’s political and business elite at a mountain resort in Switzerland.
Quoted in Business Insider, “‘So ashamed’: Russian diplomat quits over Ukraine invasion, attacking Putin’s circle as corrupt and obsessed with luxury,” May 23, 2022:
UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer called Bondarev “a hero,” and shared a copy of the letter on Twitter.
Quoted in the New York Post, “‘Ashamed’ Russian diplomat resigns over ‘needless’ Ukraine war,” May 23, 2022:
Hiller Neuer, executive director of the advocacy group UN Watch, called Bondarev “a hero” for taking a public stand against his government.
“Bondarev should be invited to speak in Davos this week,” he added, “and the U.S., the U.K. and the EU should lead the free world in creating a program to encourage more Russian diplomats to follow and defect, by providing protection, financial security and resettlement for diplomats and their families.”
Quoted in USA Today, “‘Ashamed’ of war, Russian diplomat resigns,” May 23, 2022:
U.N. Watch executive director Hillel Neuer called on other Russian diplomats worldwide to follow Bondarev’s “moral example” and resign. “Boris Bondarev is a hero,” Neuer said.
Quoted in the Daily Mail, “You can run but you can’t hide: Moment Russian tanks hiding in occupied gardens are obliterated after they were spotted by Ukrainian drones,” May 23, 2022:
‘Bondarev should be invited to speak in Davos this week,’ said Hiller Neuer, executive director of the advocacy group UN Watch. ‘And the US, the UK and the EU should lead the free world in creating a program to encourage more Russian diplomats to follow and defect, by providing protection, financial security and resettlement for diplomats and their families.’
Quoted by ITV, “Russian diplomat quits over Ukraine war, says he has ‘never been so ashamed of my country,’” May 23, 2022:
Hiller Neuer, executive director of the advocacy group UN Watch, tweeted a copy of Bondarev’s letter and said simply: “Boris Bondarev is a hero.”
North Korea Takes Chair of UN Conference on Disarmament
Quoted in the Telegraph, “The UN’s elevation of North Korea is a sick joke,” May 29, 2022:
As Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, said: “Having the North Korean regime of Kim Jong-un preside over global nuclear weapons disarmament will be like putting a serial rapist in charge of a women’s shelter.”
Quite. I’d like to think it’s a spoof, but then, given that in so many areas the world has gone mad, I think we had better assume it’s real. Indeed, UN rules mean North Korea’s ambassador to the forum, Mr Han Tae-song, will be tasked with helping organise the work of the conference and setting the agenda and as UN Watch makes clear, he will exercise all functions of a presiding officer, “and represent the body in its relations with states, the General Assembly and other organs of the United Nations, and with other international organisations”.