— by Sara Fried
The United States called for the resignation of Richard Falk, U.N. special rapporteur on Palestinian human rights, following his statements against the pro-Israel group UN Watch. Eileen Chamberlain Donahoe, U.S. Representative to the Human Rights Council, said:
The United States completely rejects and condemns the irresponsible call by Mr. Richard Falk, U.N. Special Rapporteur for the Palestinian Territories, to investigate a legitimate and U.N.-accredited NGO, UN Watch. His statement and recommendation, if given credibility, would threaten the independent voice of civil society at the United Nations.
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Mr. Falk’s most recent statement, which he dramatically and recklessly included in an official U.N. document, is characteristic of previous reprehensible comments and actions he has made during his tenure as a special rapporteur. It once again starkly demonstrates that he is unfit to serve in his role as a U.N. special rapporteur.
His views and behavior, both official and unofficial, are offensive and provocative and do nothing to advance peace in the Middle East or to further the protection and promotion of human rights. We again call for his resignation.
According to JTA, Falk accused UN Watch of “‘demeaning’ and ‘defaming’ his character, damaging the ‘credibility,’ ‘effectiveness’ and ‘substantive intention’ of his mandate.” His criticisms of UN Watch followed the organization’s resolution to remove him from his position, after he blamed the Boston Marathon bombings on “the American global domination project” and “Tel Aviv.”
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) praised Ambassador Donahoe for her statement against Falk. ADL National Director Abraham Foxman said:
We fully agree with Ambassador Donahoe’s conclusion that Mr. Falk is ‘unfit to serve in his role as a U.N. special rapporteur.’ His continued affiliation with the U.N. makes a mockery out of the Human Rights Council’s founding purpose, and undermines the important work of the U.N. If he does not leave voluntarily, the Human Rights Council should remove him.