According to the Jewish Chronicle in Britain, tomorrow the United Kingdom will officially become the 11th country to pull out of the U.N.’s “anti-racism” conference, which is scheduled to take place on September 22, in New York.
Known as “Durban III,” the event is meant to attract world leaders en masse during the opening days of the U.N. General Assembly.
The Chronicle reports that British Prime Minister David Cameron has taken the decision because he does “not want the U.K. to be seen to celebrate the anniversary of an event associated with anti-semitism.” Durban III is supposed to “commemorate” the 10th anniversary of the notorious anti-semitic hate fest that took place in South Africa in 2001.
The first Durban conference ended just three days before 9/11 and extremists from around the world were attracted to the U.N. event like bees to honey. The streets were filled with demonstrators carrying signs like “for the liberation of Quds, machine guns based upon faith and Islam must be used” and “the martyrs blood irrigates the tree of revolution in Palestine.” Inside government part of Durban I, U.N. member states adopted a declaration charging Israel – and Israel alone among 192 nations – with racism and deciding Palestinians were “victims” of Israeli racism.
The U.S., led by Holocaust survivor Congressman Tom Lantos, and Israel walked out of the first Durban conference. Ten countries refused to attend Durban II which was held in Geneva in April 2009. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad opened the Durban II conference, and was the only head of state or government to participate. From the U.N.’s “anti-racism” podium, he disputed the veracity of the Holocaust, said “the word Zionism personifies racism,” and described Zionists as people with “ugly faces.”
This time, Ahmadinejad will be speaking at the U.N. on the same day as Durban III but addressing his remarks to the whole of the U.N. General Assembly. At the General Assembly last year, he claimed that the 9/11 attacks were an inside job “to save the Zionist regime.”
Fortunes for Durban III champions, like U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay, received one more credibility blow today. The UN has just circulated a list of NGOs allowed to participate in Durban III and it has red flags all over it.
Each UN member state was handed a veto over accreditation of any NGO that wished to attend. The U.N. list says four NGOs that applied for a permit, won’t be allowed in: organizations from Denmark and Nepal that represent the Dalits (sometimes referred to as “outcasts” or “untouchables”), a little-known group dealing with human rights in Iraq, and the Swiss-based U.N. Watch, despite its close relations to the Obama administration and its support for U.S. membership on the UN Human Rights Council. The objecting states are not revealed.
But that’s not all. The UN stamp of approval to attend the conference was awarded to an NGO with close ties to the Qaddafi regime – “North South XXI.” According to the website of the “Al-Qaddafi International Prize for Human Rights,” the North South XXI organization is its primary associate. North South U.N. representatives use their U.N. speaking slots, for example, to tie Israel to “racism,” “genocide,” and “extermination.”
Another “anti-racism” NGO approved by the U.N. for participation in Durban III is the Mouvement contre le racism et pour l’amitié entre les peuples (MRAP), which has used its UN platform to accuse Israel of “ethnic cleansing and apartheid.”
Britain’s pullout will be a serious blow to the U.N. and Durban III’s standing, and immediately raises the stakes for France in particular. The French can expect a serious hit to their moral stature on the world stage should they decide to stay without Britain or Germany.
Anne Bayefsky is a Senior Fellow at the Hudson Institute and director of the Touro Institute on Human Rights and the Holocaust.
Anne Bayefsky is director of the Touro Institute on Human Rights and the Holocaust. Follow her on Twitter @AnneBayefsky.