In First, UN Anti-Racism Committee Slams Palestinians Over Antisemitic School Textbooks
The UN’s anti-racism committee issued an unprecedented criticism of the Palestinians on Thursday, calling on the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah to rein in antisemitic statements from PA officials as well as antisemitic material contained in Palestinian school textbooks.
In a historic first, the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD) urged the PA to combat “hate speech and incitement to violence,” pointing out that some textbooks used in Palestinian schools “fuel hatred” and “may incite violence” and “antisemitism.”
The CERD further called on the Palestinians to “remove any derogatory comments and images from school curricula and textbooks that perpetuate prejudices and hatred.”
In addition, the panel found that Palestinians laws and policies failed to implement UN treaties on racism, or to properly investigate complaints for acts of racial discrimination.
The 18 independent experts reviewed the Palestinian record and those of six other countries at a session that ended on Thursday, when they issued their findings.
UN Watch — one of the NGOs that briefed the committee on the Palestinian record — said in a statement on Friday that it “commends the UN experts for calling on the representatives of [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas to take action against antisemitism in Palestinian textbooks, and for spotlighting the mistreatment of minorities in Palestinian-controlled areas.”