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June 23, 2022 4:14 pm

Israel’s UN Envoy Demands Accountability After Report Exposes New Cases of Antisemitism at Palestinian Refugee Agency

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Palestinian employees of UNRWA in Gaza City demonstrate against the US decision in Jan 2018 to cut contributions to the agency. Photo: Reuters/Mohammed Salem.

Israel’s envoy to the United Nations launched a fresh attack on Thursday upon UNRWA, the refugee agency solely dedicated to the Palestinians that was charged in a recent independent report with inciting antisemitism.

“Not only does UNRWA not help resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, it causes enormous damage, incites hatred and terrorism and perpetuates the conflict, all under the auspices of the UN, which buries its head in the sand and refuses to see reality,” Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, Gilad Erdan, said in a statement on Thursday.

Erdan cited a report published by the UN Watch NGO, that documented over 120 UNRWA educators and staff promoting violence and antisemitism on social media. Titled “UNRWA’s Teachers of Hate,” the report also discovered 20 new cases of “virulent UNRWA staff incitement which violate the agency’s rules and stated values of zero tolerance for racism, discrimination or antisemitism.”

One May 2022 Facebook post by an UNRWA teacher in Lebanon, Elham Mansour, declared: By Allah, anyone who can kill and slaughter any Zionist and Israeli criminal, and doesn’t do so, doesn’t deserve to live. Kill them and pursue them everywhere, they are the greatest enemy….All Israel deserves is death.” Another post by Mansour, addressed to “filthy Zionists,” urged Palestinians to “slaughter each and every one of you and toss you into the garbage heaps, because you are filthy, you contaminate any land you are in.”

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According to UN Watch, UNRWA’s budget last year included $338 million from the United States, $177 million from Germany, $118 million from the European Commission.

Erdan argued that the “UN must be held accountable for the UN-funded incitement and hatred. UNRWA unfortunately does not help advance a resolution of the conflict at all, but on the contrary: it disseminates false Palestinian narratives and turns a blind eye to incitement to murder Israelis and blatant antisemitism.”

In a separate development, an Israeli representative was elected to the UN General Assembly’s Committee on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women on Thursday.

The candidate, Prof. Daphna Hacker, was elected by a majority of 115 countries in the General Assembly to a four-year term on the committee.

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