UN Watch written statements at the 51st session of the Human Rights Council

The following submissions by United Nations Watch have been published by the UN as official documents of the 51st session of the Human Rights Council.

A/HRC/51/NGO/58: Combating Antisemitism

Excerpt: We commend the United Nations and the international community for recently joining together to take an important stand in identifying and combating antisemitism.

In February 2020, the UN Secretary-General designated Mr. Miguel Ángel Moratinos, the High Representative for the UN Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), as the UN Focal Point to monitor antisemitism and enhance a system-wide-response.

On August 1st, in reaction to the incident described below, Under-Secretary-General Moratinos stated: “I am determined to continue to work with all UN Member States, particularly the State of Israel, as well as all relevant non-state actors, UN entities and relevant bodies to combat and monitor antisemitism, as well as enhance a system-wide response. Words matter. Hate rhetoric is toxic. Therefore education about antisemitism is key to combating it in all its forms. It is also essential to agree on a definition on antisemitism. UNAOC remains committed to take a firm stance against antisemitism including any comments or actions seen as stigmatizing the Jewish people.”

A/HRC/51/NGO/54: Impartiality Requirement for UN Fact-Finders

Accordingly, when a COI is mandated to investigate a conflict, and it appoints a commissioner who has made numerous inflammatory and highly partisan statements against one of the countries in the conflict, declared that country guilty in the very case and controversy that the COI is mandated to examine, and lobbied governments to boycott that country, then “to give the person in question the benefit of the doubt if s/he claims to be nonetheless impartial is to ask too much of the public.”

Similarly, when another commissioner in the same COI is condemned for racism against one of the sides that he is investigating—condemned by 20 governments, the Secretary General, President of the Human Rights Council, and the Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion—then that member fails the impartiality test and compromises the integrity of the COI.

A/HRC/51/NGO/55: Breach of UN Rules by the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967

United Nations Watch is concerned by statements that incite violence and terrorism made by the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories. This is contrary to the spirit of her duties as a UN human rights expert to uphold the core UN values of universality and impartiality, and violates the Charter of the United Nations and other UN Rules requiring staff to uphold the highest standards of competence and integrity.

UN Watch