JERUSALEM – Israel's ambassador to the United Nations criticized the U.S. administration on Wednesday for granting an entrance visa to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and allowing him to address the U.N. General Assembly.
The Israeli delegation to the General Assembly, including Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, boycotted Ahmadinejad, who has said he wants to wipe Israel off the map and dismissed the Holocaust as a myth.
"We didn't think it was correct to honor this man with our presence. I am very sorry that he was even allowed to speak at the U.N.," Danny Gillerman, Israel's ambassador to the U.N., said.
"I ask myself if the American administration didn't have an opportunity, even at the expense of violating its agreements with the U.N., not to give an entrance visa to this man," Gillerman told Israel Radio.
In his address to the General Assembly on Tuesday, Ahmadinejad took aim at U.S. actions in Iraq and Lebanon and accused Washington of abusing its powers in the U.N. Security Council.
The United States has repeatedly called for U.N. sanctions on Iran, which has so far rejected international demands to halt uranium enrichment, a key step to developing nuclear weapons. The United States and Israel say Iran's nuclear program is aimed at developing weapons, but Tehran insists it is for peaceful purposes.