Israel’s decision to cut ties with UN rights council regrettable: UNHRC

An illegal Israeli settlement in the Israeli-occupied West Bank city of al-Khalil (Hebron) (file photo)
The President of the United Nations Human Rights Council has said that Israel’s decision to break ties with the council over a UN announcement to conduct a probe into Israeli settlements is “most regrettable”.

Laura Dupuy Lasserre, the head of the 47-state body, said on Monday that she had not received an official confirmation of Israel’s decision, but “if it is indeed the case, this would be most regrettable,” AFP reported.

“I have no doubt that it is in the interest of Israel to cooperate with the Human Rights Council on this investigative mission, not least so that it can explain its own policies and actions to the independent commissioners once they are appointed,” said Lasserre.

On Thursday, the 47-member council adopted a resolution which condemns Israel’s announcements of new settlement homes, demands a reversal of the settlement policy and orders a probe into how Israeli settlements are infringing upon the rights of Palestinians.

The resolution was adopted by 36 votes in favor and 10 abstentions. The United States was the only member that voted against it.

Earlier on Monday, Israeli Foreign Ministry Spokesman Yigal Palmor said that it has decided to cut contact with the council in condemnation of the resolution, adding that Israel had yet to formally inform the council of its decision.

On Sunday, Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman called for a boycott of the council, while Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Thursday that the council “should be ashamed of itself.”

On Thursday, the US also slammed the resolution, saying it was “deeply troubled by this council’s bias against Israel.”

Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for the acting Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas, described the vote as a shift in position of the world in favor for the rights of Palestinians.

Nearly 500,000 Israelis live in more than 100 settlement units built since the 1967 Israeli occupation of the West Bank and East al-Quds (Jerusalem).


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