UN Vote on Goldstone 'Depressingly Predictable'

Published November 16th, 2009 - 03:47 GMT

AJC condemned the United Nations General
Assembly resolution sponsored by Arab states which endorsed the Goldstone Commission
report on the conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. The resolution was
supported by 114 states with 44 abstentions and 18 opposing.

"This outcome was depressingly predictable, given that the UN General Assembly has
long been established as a forum for anti-Israel agitation," said AJC Executive
Director David Harris. "We note, of course, that the vote is non-binding. In the
event that this matter is referred to the UN Security Council, we urge member states
to dismiss the recommendations of the Goldstone Commission, which was grossly
prejudiced against Israel from its inception."

AJC praised the 18 countries which voted against the report. "While it is
disappointing that the European Union countries did not vote as a bloc, we salute
the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Italy, The Netherlands, Poland and Slovakia
for their courageous stance in rejecting this resolution," said Harris.

"Even in such troubled times, it is heartening to know that Israel has trusted,
valued friends, and also that there are those whose consciences are sufficiently
troubled to abstain." The other countries voting no included Australia, Canada,
Israel, Macedonia, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, Panama, Ukraine and
the United States.

As U.S. Deputy Ambassador Alejandro Wolff declared, the Goldstone Commission's
report should remain in the Geneva-based Human Rights Council, which commissioned
it. Wolff strongly criticized the report for "its unbalanced focus on Israel" and
its "failure to assign appropriate responsibility to Hamas for its decision to base
itself and its operations in heavily civilian-populated urban areas."

Both AJC and its Geneva-based affiliate UN Watch have vociferously opposed the
Goldstone Commission's recommendations, highlighting its biased mandate, numerous
distortions and disturbing indifference to the suffering of Israeli citizens living
under the constant bombardment of Hamas rockets.

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