UN’s fixed inquiry is exposed - opinion

One doesn't have to be a prophet to foresee the content of the first report of the special Human Rights Council's Committee of Inquiry (COI) that was established after Guardian of the Walls operation

 Fixed Inquiry - The Biased UN Commission Against Israel (photo credit: Shutterstock and Flickr)
Fixed Inquiry - The Biased UN Commission Against Israel
(photo credit: Shutterstock and Flickr)

On May 27, 2021, following Operation Guardian of the Walls, the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) adopted a resolution that set the stage for the creation of what is potentially the most anti-Israel mechanism to date: "The United Nations Independent International Commission of Inquiry (COI) on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem and Israel."

The resolution mandated the COI to "investigate all alleged violations and abuses of international human rights law leading up to and since April 13, 2021." The resolution further mandated the commission to "investigate all underlying root causes of recurrent tensions, instability, and protraction of conflict, including systematic discrimination and repression based on national, ethnic, racial, or religious identity."

The following five elements are some of the examples that portend the result of the upcoming and undoubtedly biased “inquiry” and its anti-Israel nature:

  1. The Committee of Inquiry is a UN entity:  The UNHRC, much like most UN bodies, has been overrun with politically motivated agendas and bias.  A review of the UNHRC's anti-Israel bias is enough to shatter any hopes of fairness and impartiality.
  2. There is no mention of Hamas: Looking at it from the outside, one can easily think an internationally recognized terrorist organization was not a party to this armed conflict and did not fire thousands of rockets aimed at civilians. The resolution does not mention Hamas even once.
  3. The COI is charged with investigating "all underlying root causes:”   Such a limitless scope is unprecedented. Granting the COI such freedom to look limitlessly at the root causes of the conflict is essentially granting it the right to review spurious political claims and offer political conclusions masquerading as legal ones.
  4. The "inquiry" is open-ended:  The COI has effectively been granted a platform to execute a bi-annual Israel-bashing event, virtually indefinitely.
  5. A known anti-Israel individual has been elected as Chair of the COI: Navi Pillay, who was chosen to chair the COI, has a known and well-documented history of anti-Israel bias. Among the numerous examples available, perhaps the most recent and outrageous one can be found in a letter Mrs. Pillay wrote to President Biden just before her appointment as Chair of the COI. In the letter, she referred to Israel's "domination and oppression of the Palestinian people," calling on the US to "address the root causes of the violence" by ending Israel's "ever-expanding discrimination and systemic oppression."

A special report was released today, titled "Fixed Inquiry," prepared by the International Legal Forum (ILF) in collaboration with 25 other prominent worldwide organizations, including UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI). This unique document, which garnered outstanding support from around the world, exposes the anti-Israel nature of the COI and its members, especially Navi Pillay.

Anyone who has dealt seriously with the UN knows it is nothing more than a political entity controlled by non-democratic states which have a tradition of hostility toward Israel.  However, among the general public, there remains the illusion that this once noble institution is still intact and is functioning as an entity tasked with keeping world peace.   Because of this perception, this new and powerful mechanism is potentially very dangerous for the Jewish state. It has the power to spread slander and libel against Israel on a bi-annual cycle, further inflaming global antisemitism and delegitimizing Israel on the international stage. 

This is simply the first round; we must prepare for the future.

Yifa Segal, Esq.  is an International Director at UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI). Ms. Segal served as the Chief of Staff of Israel's Ambassador to the US and the Founder and CEO of the International Legal Forum (ILF). 

This op-ed is published in partnership with a coalition of organizations that fight antisemitism across the world. Read the previous article by Michael Mostyn.