BERLIN - Germany's foreign ministry announced on Friday that it will not take part in the UN-sponsored anti-racism Durban III conference on September 22, because of the possibility that the event can be turned into a forum for anti-Semitic statements.
In a statement to The Jerusalem Post on Friday, a spokesman wrote, “Germany will not participate in the commemoration event for the 10th year anniversary of the Durban conference.”
He added that Germany “cannot rule out that the Durban commemoration event in New York will be misused for anti-Semitic statements, as was the case in previous conferences.”
The spokesman continued that “therefore Germany will not participate. This is an expression of our special responsibility toward Israel.”
Anny Bayefsky, a human rights scholar and the principal organizer of a counter-Durban III event, told the Post on Friday, “Germany has done absolutely the right thing in pulling out of the UN's Durban III conference, which is a 'commemoration' - a celebration - of UN-based anti-Semitism on a global scale. Germany, and other European nations which have already pulled out, need to call on the UK and France immediately to stand with them and against Durban's unacceptable perversion of the foundational promise of the UN Charter "the equal rights of nations large and small."'