Statement on Antisemitic Remarks by a Commissioner of the UN Human Rights Council’s Commission of Inquiry on the Situation in Israel and the West Bank and Gaza
Ambassador Michèle Taylor, U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN Human Rights Council and
Deborah Lipstadt, U.S. Department of State Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism
Antisemitism and anti-Israel bias are a persistent venom that for far too long has poisoned international discourse and polluted international organizations including the United Nations. The United States condemns it unequivocally.
Recently, Miloon Kothari, an appointed Commissioner of the UN Human Rights Council’s Commission of Inquiry related to Israel made comments in a media interview referring disparagingly to the “Jewish lobby,” echoing age-old antisemitic tropes, and questioning the right of the state of Israel to be a member of the United Nations. The United States is in solidarity with the Government of Israel and the Israeli people. We categorically reject antisemitism and anti-Israel bias, including the comments by Mr. Kothari, which are outrageous, inappropriate, and corrosive.
The United States also firmly and consistently opposes the open-ended nature of this Commission of Inquiry, which only reinforces the reputation of UN bodies as vulnerable to the actions of member states intent upon isolating and excoriating the state of Israel. We call upon UN Human Rights High Commissioner Michelle Bachelet to publicly repudiate Mr. Kothari’s statements and take steps to ensure UN human rights monitoring and investigative mechanisms remain fully objective and impartial.