Danny Danon addressing the UN Security Council, October 22, 2015.
(photo credit: UN PHOTO/KIM HAUGHTON)
NEW YORK – Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon wrote to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Wednesday demanding he condemn Iran’s anti-Semitic cartoon competition, scheduled for June.
The competition, which is sponsored by the municipal authorities in the Iranian capital, is the 11th Tehran International Cartoon Biennial and will focus this time on cartoons depicting the Holocaust.
The winner will receive a $50,000 cash prize.
The event is expected to draw participants from 50 countries, according to Iran’s semi-official IRNA news agency. Organizers told IRNA last month that the Cartoon Biennial does not mean to “approve or deny the Holocaust” but simply to raise the topic.
Danon called the event “an anti-Semitic act” and said Iran is “evil incarnate.”
“Holocaust denial is the most powerful expression of anti-Semitism which legitimizes the murder of six million Jews,” Danon wrote in his letter to Ban.
He pointed out that on January 27, the United Nations will mark the annual International Holocaust Remembrance Day, “while a UN member state is organizing an international competition with the sole purpose of denying the Holocaust.
“The Iranians are trying to desecrate the memory of the six million Jews murdered in the Holocaust, and the United Nations must stand by Israel and condemn this heinous act,” Danon wrote.
Last May, a similar competition, the second International Holocaust Cartoon contest, was held in Iran and showcased more than 800 drawings. The goal, according to organizers, was to “highlight the West’s double standard concerning freedom of expression in which disrespect for Islam is allowed and tolerated while other subjects, such as the Holocaust, are made taboo.”