Israel chides Europeans over UN rights council vote (AFP) AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE) 03/27/12)
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Israel was on Tuesday lodging protests with several European
countries who voted in favour of a UN Human Rights Council resolution
ordering an investigation of Jewish settlement activity.
Israel has already summoned Belgium and Austria´s ambassadors to the
foreign ministry to discuss last week´s decision by the Human Rights
Council which authorised a probe into the impact of settlements on
Palestinian rights, an Israeli official told AFP.
"We will also be protesting to Norway and Switzerland," he said,
speaking on condition of anonymity.
"Most of the other countries who voted for this probe are part of the
automatic Muslim majority that is systematically anti-Israel," he
Israel has sharply criticised the council for authorising the
inquiry, and on Monday the foreign ministry said it would cut contact
with the body to protest the decision.
"There was a decision by the foreign ministry to sever work contacts
with the organisation," ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor told AFP on
"There won´t be working relations with them, conversations, passing
papers, making visits, exchanging information, consulting one
another, attending meetings," he added.
But US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro defended the Jewish state´s
response to the council´s resolution.
"I understand Israel´s feelings about the commission," he told
Israeli public radio on Tuesday.
"It´s a body that has constantly been obsessed with Israel and has
unfairly focused on Israel to the exclusion of major other human
rights issues that really cry out for attention. That´s something
The resolution authorising the probe was adopted by the 47-member
council by 36 votes in favour and 10 abstentions. Only the United
States voted against it.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed the council
as "hypocritical" in response, saying the body "should be ashamed of
Israel is not a member of the Human Rights Council, but as a UN
member it has the right to observe discussions and can contribute
under certain conditions, though it cannot vote or present
resolutions. (Copyright © 2012 Agence France Presse. 03/27/12)
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