NGO Monitor calls for resignation of UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing for use of term "Judaization"

NGO Monitor today said that the use of the term “Judaization” yesterday by Raquel Rolnik, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Adequate Housing, to describe Israeli housing policies, was “antisemitic” and “immoral”, and called for her immediate resignation.

The UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights earlier posted a press release on their website here containing one reference to Rolnik’s use of the term.

Also see our earlier post on Ms. Rolnik’s report of her preliminary findings here.

In a statement published here on their website, the Jerusalem-based organization NGO Monitor said that “the term originated with Arab rejectionists and has been promoted by fringe non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that falsely claim the mantle of human rights. ‘Judaization’ is an anti-Jewish racist term which suggests that the presence of Jews is alien and unacceptable … This immoral rhetoric is part of the broader delegitimization campaign that is counterproductive to fostering peace in the region. As with the false ‘apartheid’ analogy, it is invoked with the same goal to demonize”.

Anne Herzberg, legal advisor for NGO Monitor, said in the statement that “The term Judaization is immoral and employed for antisemitic goals; we expect that it would not be invoked by a UN Special Rapporteur claiming to operate with a human rights framework … Raquel Rolnik’s use of it makes peace more difficult to achieve, and in light of this she should resign immediately”.

Ben White, writing here on the Electronic Intifada website, notes that the same term, “Judaization”, has been used without any uproar by Israel’s Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon here, as well as by Israeli academics, and Israeli public officials [including a rabbi]…

Meanwhile, the UN Human Rights office in Geneva reports that “The United Nations Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, Richard Falk, will conduct a field mission from 10 to 20 February, visiting Egypt, the occupied Palestinian territory and Jordan to gather information on the broad range of human rights concerns connected to Israel’s occupation of Palestine”.

Falk was unceremoniously deported in mid-December 2008, the last time he showed up in Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport in exercise of his mandate — he had not been granted a visa, and arrived on his national [U.S.] passport.

Israeli officials said that the decision not to admit Falk was based on their outrage that some months earlier, Falk had visited in what he said was a purely private capacity — but had allowed himself to introduced at a conference in Ramallah as the forthcoming UN Special Rapporteur on human rights in the oPt

Now, Falk is apparently about to test the waters again. The statement published on the UN Human Rights website here, quotes Falk as saying: “This mission will focus particularly on the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, the human rights implications of prolonged refugee status, disturbing patterns of violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinians and their properties, as well as the conditions and treatment of Palestinians detained by Israel”.

The UN statement adds that Falk “will convene a press conference at the end of his visit on 20 February, in Amman, and he will submit a full report on his mission to the Human Rights Council in June 2012”.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *