February 17, 2022
Mr. António Manuel de Oliveira Guterres Secretary-General of the United Nations
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RE: The UN Human Rights Council and its new Commission of Inquiry
I am writing to you to express shock and outrage at the creation by the UNHRC of a Commission of Inquiry (COI) dedicated to condemning Israel and calling for its isolation and rejection among the nations of the world.
The Commission of Inquiry is actually not charged with an inquiry, which would look at all aspects of the Israeli-Palestinian Arab conflict, but rather it is charged with the prosecution of Israel, based on a presumption of its guilt in a whole list of nefarious crimes.
To lead this COI, the UNHRC has appointed three well known haters of Israel who have demonstrated their hostility in word and action over the years: supporting the hate-fest of Durban, advocating for Boycotting, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel, making gross false accusations of child torture by Israel, and more.
By selecting biased leaders to head this COI, which will be funded and will function in perpetuity, the UNHRC is in breach of its own three principles for any inquiry: This COI is neither independent, nor impartial, nor objective. The COI fails each and every one of these standards. This “inquiry” was initiated by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, and none of the worlds’ free democracies voted for it. It is an abomination.
We urge you to do your very best to have this shameful COI immediately retracted.
The UNHRC has demonstrated its consistent bias against Israel for years, dedicating a permanent agenda item to Israel and issuing hundreds of condemnations against it over the years, while ignoring awful human rights abusers around the world, of which many are members of the UNHRC and have voted for this COI. The functions and funding of this Council must be examined as it perpetuates hatred, antisemitism, divisiveness among nations, and has never addressed serious human rights abuses, but provides shelter to the abusers.
Membership criteria in the UNHRC need to be revisited. But first, abolish its latest shameful act, abolish the anti-Israel COI.
Andria Spindel, Executive Director, CAEF & Co-Chair
cc. Hon. Irwin Cotler, Special Envoy on Preserving Holocaust Remembrance and Combatting Antisemitism
Bob Rae, Canadian Ambassador to the United Nations