US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley speaks at UN headquarters in New York.
(photo credit: LUCAS JACKSON/REUTERS)
LOS ANGELES - United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley slammed members of the Human Rights Council as “foolish” on Friday after it passed five resolutions condemning Israel.
In a statement released following the conclusion of the council’s 37th session, the US mission pointed out that the inter-governmental body adopted only one resolution each against North Korea, Iran, and Syria.
“When the Human Rights Council treats Israel worse than North Korea, Iran, and Syria, it is the Council itself that is foolish and unworthy of its name,” Haley said in the statement.
“It is time for the countries who know better to demand changes. Many countries agree that the Council’s agenda is grossly biased against Israel, but too few are willing to fight it.
“When that happens, as it did today,” Haley continued, “the Council fails to fulfill its duty to uphold human rights around the world.”
Haley also warned that the US is still weighing whether it plans to remain on the council, adding that Friday’s resolutions was another blow to the institution’s “credibility.”
“The United States continues to evaluate our membership in the Human Rights Council. Our patience is not unlimited. Today’s actions make clear that the organization lacks the credibility needed to be a true advocate for human rights,” Haley added.
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One of the five anti-Israel resolutions passed in Geneva, Switzerland on Friday called for ending all arms sales to Israel, which passed in a 27 to 4 vote. 15 states abstained.
The UNHRC decision calls upon “all states to promote compliance under international law” with regard to Israeli actions, adding that the council is responsible for “Ensuring accountability and justice for all violations of international law in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including east Jerusalem.”
Since taking office in January 2017, the Trump administration has taken a more aggressive stance towards UN resolutions and decisions aimed at criticizing Israel.
The US mission has also expressed its dwindling patience with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, accusing him of dragging his feet in peace negotiations.
The United States will not “chase after a Palestinian leadership that lacks what is needed to achieve peace,” Haley told the UN Security Council in January.
The Trump administration has also expressed displeasure with the 82-year-old Palestinian leader after saying he would only accept a broad, internationally-backed panel to broker any peace talks with Israel, effectively nixing America’s historic role as a mediator between the two parties.
Other anti-Israel resolutions that passed on Friday included one that calls on Israel to withdraw from the Golan Heights, which passed by 25 votes to 14 and 7 abstentions.
A resolution on Palestinian self-determination calling for an Israeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines as well as one that called on Israel to halt settlement activity and another that condemned it for human rights abuses against the Palestinians were also approved.