Why does the U.N. have such a problem with Israel?

We can never forget the pivotal role of the United Nations in the establishment of the State of Israel and recognizing the importance of realizing the universal values embodied in the United Nations Charter.

Yet through the years it is obviously clear that ongoing biased actions at the United Nations seem to single out Israel for special condemnation and it is submitted that this constitutes a serious violation of the sovereign equality principle in Chapter I Article 2 Paragraph 1 of the United Nations Charter, which states that ‘The Organization is based on the principle of the sovereign equality of all its Members.’

Let’s look at the immediate history of these disproportionate number of resolutions.
In 2015, there were 20 UN General Assembly resolutions against Israel, four for the rest of the world.
In 2014, there were 20 UN General Assembly resolutions against Israel, five for the rest of the world.
In 2013, there were 22 UN General Assembly resolutions against Israel, five for the rest of the world.
In 2012, there were 21 UN General Assembly resolutions against Israel, six for the rest of the world.

In this four year period a total of 83 resolutions against Israel were adopted, compared to 20 for the other 192 member states of the UN.
General Assembly Resolution 60/251 of March 15, 2006 establishing the Human Rights Council states “. . . that all human rights must be treated in a fair and equal manner, on the same footing and with the same emphasis . . .” and “. . . the work of the Council shall be guided by the principles of universality, impartiality, objectivity and non-selectivity, constructive international dialogue and cooperation . . .”
Agenda Item 7 of the UN Human Rights Council is the only separate and permanent matter of the Council devoted solely to one country, Israel.

In the 11 years since the Human Rights Council was established, Israel has been the subject of a total of 73 separate resolutions and country specific Special Sessions. The other 192 countries in the world combined have been the subject of a total of 271 resolutions and country specific Special Sessions. On average over these eleven years, there were seven resolutions and Special Sessions condemning Israel, and only 25 for the rest of the world.
Fully one-third of all the country specific Special Sessions of the Council were convened to deal exclusively with claims of human rights violations by Israel, and more than one quarter of all the resolutions adopted by the Council in its regular sessions expressly condemned Israel.

The Council’s Agenda Item 7 devoted solely to Israel, and the grossly disproportionate number of Special Sessions on Israel directly violate the express provisions of United Nations General Assembly Resolution 60/251 constituting a further serious violation of the United Nations Charter.

In the recently concluded session of the UN Human Rights Council, where countries with the most appalling human rights records in the world absurdly sit in judgment, and where Israel is the only country which the Council has assigned a permanent place on its agenda, five separate resolutions were passed condemning Israel.

At the most recent meeting of the 58-member Executive Board of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), a majority of Executive Board members voted in favor of an offensive, distorted statement on holy sites in Jerusalem which omitted any reference to the thousands of years of Jewish biblical connection to the Temple Mount, the holiest site in the Jewish religion, as well as the Western Wall, Rachel’s Tomb and other sites sacred to Jews and Christians, and falsely accused Israel of deliberately defiling Muslim cemeteries by planting fake Jewish graves in their midst.

The blatant discrimination against Israel makes a mockery of the concept of universal standards at the UN. When standards and principles are applied in a highly prejudiced fashion such as this they lose their very meaning.

It is important therefore to continuously monitor the application of fair and universal standards at the UN and to continue to make public any violations of those standards; to enlist representatives of member nations to support this call for justice and fairness, and to engage officials, media and influential leaders from every walk of life to endorse this call to end the blatant discrimination against Israel.

What might be a good start? How about if the General Assembly would discontinue the DPR and reallocate the staff and budgetary resources to other areas of need within the UN Secretariat, and disband the CEIRPP, and furthermore that the UN states recommit to the founding principles of “sovereign equality” and to “fulfill in good faith the obligations assumed by them in accordance with . . .” the United Nations Charter, and additionally the permanent members of the Security Council and the Secretary General could actively support and promote projects and programs within the UN to reinforce the founding principles of “sovereign equality” and “good faith” dealing.

The only member committed to facing this singling out is the United States government, which has opposed these anti-Israel measures, as it continues the intensive effort within the United Nations to achieve the goals of this campaign and finally end the injustices, indignities, and discrimination towards Israel.

Other democratic countries truly committed to fighting discrimination and prejudice should step up here to demonstrate a similar commitment in the U.N. and could join the U.S. which has consistently opposed the efforts to delegitimize Israel over the past 68 years.

About the Author
Saurav Dutt is a published author, lawyer and political columnist who has written for IB Times and been featured in The Independent, Sky News, BBC and more.