UN Watch in the News

UN Watch in the News — October 2022

UN Watch was quoted in multiple media outlets during October 2022 on topics including: Venezuela’s campaign to stay on the UN Human Rights Council, UN Watch’s accusation of discrimination against a top UN official, antisemitism in the UN, and protests in Iran.

Featured in MSNBC, “Iranian rock climber Elnaz Rekabi’s bravery is likely to be met by Iran’s cruelty,” October 20, 2022:

Iranian rock climber Elnaz Rekabi garnered international attention after competing without a hijab on Sunday during the International Federation of Sport Climbing’s Asian Championships in Seoul, South Korea. Iranian women are required by law to wear hijab outside the country when officially representing Iran.

Rekabi’s fate remains unclear though the day after the competition, Hillel Neuer, human rights activist and executive director of human rights watchdog group UN Watch, tweeted that Rekabi was going to be taken to Evin prison upon her return, which Iran Wire also reported. One of Iran’s most notorious prisons, Evin contains many of the country’s political prisoners. It, too, made international headlines this weekend after a fire broke out Saturday and at least eight inmates died. (State media has attempted to frame the incident as unrelated to the uprisings, but in video footage from outside the prison, one can hear gunshots, screams and explosions, indicative of protests.)

Featured in The Miami Herald, “U.N. Will Make a Mockery of Itself if it Reelects Venezuela to Human Rights Council,” October 7, 2022:
If the United Nations wants to avoid becoming the target of international ridicule, it should deny Venezuela a seat on the U.NHuman Rights Council. As crazy as it sounds, Venezuela — one of the world’s worst human-rights offenders — is already a Council member, and might be reelected.
Whatever the outcome of the Oct. 11 vote, it’s urgent to reform the Council in order to keep brutal dictatorships out of it. Right now, 60% of the Council‘s current members fail to meet minimal human rights standards, according to the Geneva-based UN Watch advocacy group. They include Venezuela, China, Cuba, Qatar, Libya and Eritrea.

Featured in Fox News, “UN Watchdog Accuses Top Human Rights Official of ‘Harassment, Censorship and Discrimination,’” October 13, 2022:

The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) allegedly worked to limit a watchdog group’s access to officials and press conferences on orders from its top official due to the group’s staunch criticism on a range of topics.

“[Eric] Tistounet has been giving orders to censor UN Watch since at least 2005,” Emma Reilly, a former UNHRC officer and whistleblower, told Fox News Digital.

“He moves them down or off lists of speakers, tells presidents of the council to interrupt or cut short their speeches on the occasions where he does deign to let them speak, censors their written statements to insulate himself and his policies from criticism and openly insults Hillel [Neuer] to his entire staff.”

UN Watch, the watchdog group and NGO, filed a legal complaint in New York Oct. 7 based on leaked internal emails from the UNHRC that indicate Tistounet, a French national who played a pivotal role in establishing the council, held a bias and worked to downplay and limit UN Watch.

Featured in CNS News, “UN Watchdog Lodges Complaint With Guterres, Claiming Discrimination at Human Rights Council,” October 5, 2022:

One of the most outspoken and arguably most effective non-governmental organizations accredited to the United Nations says it is submitting a formal complaint to U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, alleging a pattern of behavior from officials amounting to discrimination and censorship.

U.N. Watch Executive Director Hillel Neuer flew this week to New York from Geneva, where the NGO monitors the U.N.’s Human Rights Council, to submit the complaint to Guterres.

Speaking near U.N. headquarters, Neuer said U.N. Watch had become accustomed to evidently unfair behavior, but “in recent years we have been subjected to punishing treatment.”

Featured in The Times of Israel, “Watchdog group accuses senior UN official of trying to block its work,” October 7, 2022:

A prominent pro-Israel lobbying group at the United Nations on Friday accused a senior official at the UN Human Rights Council of systematically trying to block their work over a number of years.

UN Watch filed a 30-page complaint to Secretary-General Antonio Guterres against Eric Tistounet, the chief of the Human Rights Council branch of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, accusing him of “systematic harassment, censorship and discrimination.”

The accusations are based on testimony from a UN whistleblower who used to work for Tistounet, which said that he repeatedly tried to manipulate proceedings so that UN Watch would not be able to participate in debates.

Quoted in JNS, “‘Who, me?’ UN’s anti-Semite-in-chief Pillay denies any bias,” October 31, 2022:

After being called an anti-Semite for her U.N. commission’s savage, one-sided attacks on Israel, Navi Pillay protested that “I am 81 years old, and this is the first time I’ve ever been accused of anti-Semitism.”

Accusing Israel of human rights abuses using outright lies and half-truths is brutally unfair. But U.N. Watch Executive Director Hillel Neuer states flatly that the COI report is guilty of “shameless bias … it’s anti-Semitic.”

Featured in Ynet News, “UN report on human rights in West Bank and Gaza serves only terror supporters,” October 23, 2022:

You can safely assume that the Palestinian terrorist who carried out a stabbing attack in Jerusalem on Saturday, did not read a report by the UN Commission of Inquiry into Human Rights Violations in the West Bank and Gaza, submitted to the General Assembly last week.
This report, however, is part of an international propaganda meant to do nothing more than demonize Israel, serving no one but terror organizations like Hamas and the Islamic Jihad. If Israel is committing “war crimes” and “crimes against humanity,” as the report says, by defending its people, then by default terror acts aimed against Israelis are justified.
The third member of the committee, Australia’s Christopher Sidoti, is affiliated with an organization supporting the Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) movement.
These three, according to the definition of antisemitism, are antisemites. Hillel Neuer, head of the UN Watch, sent a detailed 30-page report on Pillay’s consistent and extreme anti-Israel stance, but to no avail.


UN Watch