Regarding the UN Human Rights Council’s decade-anniversary in 2016, the time is ripe to contemplate and evaluate what has become the council’s single most obvious recurring theme – stretching from the previously dissolved UN Commission on Human Rights up until this very day.

This is an open letter to the UN Human Rights Council in form of a speech. It concerns specifically agenda item 7: “Human Rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories“.

* * *

Dear Mr President Choi Kyong-lim,

Peace in our lifetime is possible, if only the arsenal of human rights was employed properly.

Agenda item 7 deals with several regional entities, focussing on two peoples, one of which is in part threatening the other.

Choosing which nation to attribute this description to is a mere matter of voting blocs.

In fact, both, your predecessor and this Council, prove that supranationality is a barrier for objective judgements in this field.
Yet, the struggle for Palestinian human rights can be turned around. Charging Israel however, is a Sisyphean task, appealing to an entity remote from the Palestinian cause. Eventually, you fail the Palestinian people, when sparing their leadership’s responsibility, thus facilitating the embedment of yet another undemocratic regime.

Two cornerstones need recognition, if a viable process is to be triggered.

Firstly, Palestinian institutions need technical assistance in democratization. Art. 21 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights manifests the right to democracy. While Israel provides this right to its Arab population, Palestinian entities pursue apartheid from Jews. The universality of Human Rights obligates you to request democracy in the Arab territories. With Presidential elections 7 years overdue, Art. 36 of the Palestinian Constitution is breached. Reestablishing popular sovereignty is the only means of advancing democracy.

The second objective is the Palestinian economy. Prosperity requires education, the function of which is perverted by a double-tongued leadership that preaches peace in English, while glorifying not progress, but intifada, in Arabic. Violent religious fervor is the obstacle to a liberal economy.

It must be clear, that the promotion of item 7 constitutes nothing but a shift from militant to diplomatic Pan-Arabism. Serving proof is Art. 1 of the Palestinian Constitution, stating that Arab Unity is an objective. Moreover, the Arab Charter of Human Rights, ratified by the PA, in Art. 2 labels the Jewish self- determination movement of Zionism an impediment to human dignity and calls for its elimination. This disregard for the repeal of the „Zionism is racism“-resolution unveils the PA’s motive – the target is not building a state, but destroying one.

Thank you.