There is outrage in Israel over the decision of the UN’s Annual Forum for Business and Human Rights in Geneva to give a Human Rights and Business Award to the Palestinian organization Al-Haq, which actively promotes boycotting the State of Israel. Al-Haq is led by Shawan Jabarin, former member of the terrorist organization the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). Israel refused to participate in the event, noting that the decision to award Jabarin was made by “people who are well aware of his hostile approach to Israel.”
In its twisted explanation for the controversial decision, the award committee said: “In recent years, Al-Haq has been working on a groundbreaking plan and directing attention to the way that some companies operate in the occupied Palestinian territories [sic], including companies that do business with the Israeli settlements, which are involved in human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law, especially the Hague Convention and the Fourth Geneva Convention.”
The fund that provides the financial gift that comes with the award provided a further explanation, incredibly placing the blame for the award on Israel! “Al-Haq received the Human Rights Award from the French government in cooperation with B’Tselem (a controversial left-wing Israeli human rights organization), and in response Israel published that the CEO of Al-Haq, Shawan Jabarin was a member of the PFLP. This publication led to threats against Al-Haq, including multiple death threats against CEO Jabarin and against his representative before the International Criminal Tribunal,” the fund’s spokesman admitted.
More attempts to justify the UN gift to Al-Haq included the following long-winded flip-flop of confused facts and reality in order to cast further blame on Israel for the award given to the terrorist. “Considering the weight of international legal consensus in relation to the illegal nature of the settlements themselves, and in the operations and spreading nature of the negative influence on human rights that are caused by their hands (the Jews), it is difficult to imagine a scenario where a company can engage in a registered activity in a manner that complies with UN guiding principles (concerning business and human rights) and international law. Thus Al-Haq, which works to prevent international companies from cooperating with Israel in the business field, actually works to promote human rights,” the confused, incendiary UN statement said.
The award committee provided many strange examples of the boycott activities (considered human rights activities by the UN?) of Al-Haq, including:
Al-Haq called on companies to withdraw from the Jerusalem light rail project–which would have provided convenient transportation for Palestinians to hospitals, markets, jobs and more–because of the transit of the train through areas of the city claimed by the Palestinians. Al-Haq managed to prevent companies from giving a quote to the light rail project. Companies that avoided competing for the tender include the Canadian company Bombardier, the French companies Alstom and Sistra, and German’s Siemens company.
Publication of a bill for the elimination of contacts and economic activities with companies from the occupied territories with Ireland, prohibiting imports of products and services originating from Israeli settlements to Ireland. (The bill has never passed)
Referral to the International Criminal Tribunal against alleged looting of Palestinian natural resources by private companies that include Israeli corporations. (Just another false claim)
Contacting the Dutch government to prevent dogs from being exported by Dutch companies to the Israeli security forces in an attempt to prevent them from being used to “attack Palestinian civilians.” (Surely worthy of an award!? Wait, what about animal rights?!)
Publication of a debunked report that claims Israel discriminates in the distribution of water in the West Bank.
“The granting of human rights and business awards by an official forum to this organization indicates the defects of an ‘enlighten’ UN,” said Maor Zemach, Chairman of the GO Jerusalem organization. “Presenting the award to those who destroy and activists who are antisemites primarily harms the ability to create a sensible lifestyle with a prosperous economy and a normal standard of living. The UN proves its utter lack of relevance once again in the area of human rights by giving prizes to extremists.”
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Jerusalem said in response: “This is just another forum known for its hostile approach to Israel. We do not participate in the Forum’s meetings because of its hostile approach to Israel, and we reject the validity of the aforementioned decision.”