Jewish organizations denounce UN's COI report: 'Distorted and biased'

 Overview of the session of the Human Rights Council during the speech of U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, February 27, 2020. (photo credit: REUTERS/DENIS BALIBOUSE/FILE PHOTO)
Overview of the session of the Human Rights Council during the speech of U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, February 27, 2020.
(photo credit: REUTERS/DENIS BALIBOUSE/FILE PHOTO)

WASHINGTON - Jewish organizations denounced the UN Human Rights Council Commission of Inquiry report, which concluded that the IDF's "occupation" of Palestinian territory over the pre-1967 lines was illegal because it had become akin to de facto annexation.

What did the Jewish organizations say?

American Jewish Committee (AJC) CEO Ted Deutch said in a statement that he rejects the report. “It is biased. It is one-sided. Other organizations and countries around the world should reject it,” he said.

“There’s no mention of Hamas,” Deutch added. “There’s no mention of terrorism. There’s no mention of the thousands of rockets that rained down on Israel with the sole intention of killing as many civilians as possible, and that there’s a failure to acknowledge that every country, including Israel, has a right to defend itself. The members of this commission were biased. They expressed that bias right from the start. This commission is malicious. It is illegitimate. It should be disbanded."

The World Jewish Congress (WJC) issued a statement as well. “Based on the outrageous and antisemitic comments made by some of the members of the Commission of Inquiry over the summer, WJC had little hope that their first report to the UN General Assembly would be a balanced one and one that would contribute to bringing Israelis and Palestinians closer together,” the organization said. “Unfortunately, we were not wrong.”

 Deputy Minister, Alvin Botes delivers a National Statement at the Annual High Level Panel on Human Rights Mainstreaming under the theme “Thirty years of implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child: challenges and opportunities”, at the UNHRC, Geneva. (credit: FLICKR) Deputy Minister, Alvin Botes delivers a National Statement at the Annual High Level Panel on Human Rights Mainstreaming under the theme “Thirty years of implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child: challenges and opportunities”, at the UNHRC, Geneva. (credit: FLICKR)

"There's no mention of Hamas. There’s no mention of terrorism. There’s no mention of the thousands of rockets that rained down on Israel with the sole intention of killing as many civilians as possible, and that there’s a failure to acknowledge that every country, including Israel, has a right to defend itself. The members of this commission were biased. They expressed that bias right from the start. This commission is malicious. It is illegitimate. It should be disbanded."

American Jewish Committee (AJC) CEO Ted Deutch

“The report by the Commission fails to mention at least once the terrorist organization Hamas, which is controlling the Gaza Strip and consistently puts Israeli and Palestinian lives in danger by indiscriminate attacks and threatening the security of the whole region,” said WJC. “As we have seen many times with reports coming out of the Human Rights Council, it is inflammatory, politicized and one-sided, and fails to reflect the complexity of the situation on the ground or provide any constructive way forward.” 

“This Commission does not just do a disservice to Israel and the Jewish people. The report is an affront to history and truth. Further, it seriously undermines the values of universality, impartiality and objectivity that the Human Rights Council needs to abide by and puts into question the reputation of the United Nations as an honest broker in the conflict,” WJC statement reads.

Similarly, the Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations strongly condemned the report, calling it “distorted and biased.”

"The United Nations Human Rights Council and its Commission of Inquiry on Israel are a complete and utter farce,” the umbrella group stated. “The 28-page report references Israel 277 times and not once names or even acknowledges the actions of Hamas, Islamic Jihad, or the dozens of terrorist entities and terrorist proxy groups seeking the explicit destruction of Israel and death of the Jewish people. Further, it does not mention that these organizations fire rockets and deliberately target innocent civilians.”

"By never recognizing Israel’s right to defend herself in accordance with international law, as well as placing grossly disproportionate blame on Israel for supposedly perpetuating conflict, the UNHRC offers its seal of approval for bad actors wishing to enact further violence in the region,” said the Conference of Presidents. “It is unfair and unsafe to minimize the threats facing Israel and to ignore the countless instances in which the Palestinian Authority has operated in bad faith at the negotiating table, particularly the ongoing support for ‘pay-for-slay’ schemes that promote the killing of Jews and Israelis for profit.”