@UNWatch - Un Watch

@UNWatch - Un Watch

U.N. Clash: Son of Hamas Chief Calls PA ‘Enemy of the Palestinian People’
Monday, September 25, 2017 1:57 PM

Ex-Hamas member Mosab Hassan Yousef addressing the United Nations, Sept. 25, 2017. Photo: UN Watch. GENEVA, Sept. 25, 2017 – A Hamas member turned humanitarian addressed the U.N. human rights council today and called the Palestinian Authority the “greatest enemy of the Palestinian people.” See full speech below. “If Israel did not exist, you would have no one to blame; take responsibility for the outcome of your own actions,” said Mosab Hassan Yousef, whose father was a founding member of Hamas. As recounted in the film The Green Prince, Yousef emerged as one of Israel’s prized informants, who disrupted lethal attacks and uncovered terror cells. Yousef spoke today on behalf of UN Watch, a Geneva-based human rights organization, taking the floor in a meeting on alleged Israeli violations of Palestinian human rights. By contrast, the council has no special agenda item on Syria, Sudan, Iran, North Korea, or any other region. “For good reason, Western democracies once again boycotted today’s debate,” said UN Watch executive director Hillel Neuer. “In the dystopian universe of George Orwell’s 1984, everyone was forced to undergo a daily ‘Two Minute of Hate’. In the dystopian universe of the UN Human Rights Council—where Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Cuba and Venezuela are members—the built-in schedule of every session includes one day dedicated solely to spewing hate against the Jewish state.”   #### Statement by United Nations Watch to 36th Session, U.N. Human Rights Council Delivered by Mosab Hassan Yousef Thank you, Mr. President. I take the floor on behalf of UN Watch. My name is …

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The Incredible Work of UN Watch — Fighting U.N. Dictators & Double Standards
Wednesday, September 20, 2017 4:19 PM

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Ensaf Haidar at UN to Saudi Arabia: My world was shattered after you arrested my husband
Tuesday, September 19, 2017 6:25 PM

Wife of Raif Badawi Addresses Saudi Rep in U.N. Rights Council The U.N. elected Saudi Arabia to its Human Rights Council — so yesterday we brought into that very chamber the wife of Saudi Arabia's most famous political prisoner, to finally tell the world the truth about human rights under the Whabbist regime. Posted by UN Watch on Wednesday, September 20, 2017 UN Human Rights Council Testimony of Ensaf Haidar, on Behalf of UN Watch 19 September 2017 Translated from Arabic original   Thank you. I am honored to speak on behalf of United Nations Watch. My name is Ensaf Haidar. I am the wife of jailed Saudi blogger Raif Badawi. I wish to address my words to Saudi Arabia, which is sitting here as a member of this Council. Mr. Ambassador Abdulaziz Al-Wasil, I am here to speak to you as a wife and a mother fighting for the freedom of her husband. I did not choose this role. It was imposed on me when my world was shattered in 2012 after you arrested my husband. My husband did not commit any crime. He simply aspired for a better future for his country. As you know, he was sentenced to 10 years in prison and 1000 lashes for criticizing the excess of the religious establishment in the Saudi Kingdom. He created a liberal forum, wrote a blog, and for that he was imprisoned. Mr. Ambassador, Raif was expressing an opinion – exercising a universal human right to freedom of opinion. Ironically, some of what he …

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Wife of Jailed Saudi Blogger to Address U.N. Rights Council With Saudi Ambassador Present
Tuesday, September 19, 2017 4:21 AM

GENEVA, Sept. 19, 2017 — The wife of jailed Saudi blogger Raif Badawi—the world’s most famous political prisoner—will address the United Nations for the first time in a Human Rights Council speech on Tuesday that will take place in the presence of Ambassador Abdulaziz Al-Wasil, the representative of Saudi Arabia, whose government controversially sits on the 47-nation body. Ensaf Haidar will speak at the invitation of the Geneva-based non-governmental human rights group UN Watch, which holds consultative status at the United Nations. Raif Badawi is currently four years into a 10-year prison sentence, convicted for “insulting Islam” after he published a blog calling for a free society in Saudi Arabia. Badawi was also sentenced to 1,000 lashes, 50 of which were administered in a 2015 public flogging. In wake of a global outcry, Saudi authorities have for now paused the lashes. Badawi’s wife, Ensaf Haidar, and their three young children, received asylum in Canada, and live in Sherbrooke, Quebec. Haidar recently published “Raif Badawi, The Voice of Freedom: My Husband, Our Story,” a powerful first-person account of her life with her husband, and her worldwide campaign to free him. The book tells the story of the survival of their love against all odds, and of her courageous fight for her husband’s freedom.

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The End of Human Rights at the U.N. — Panel was “Mother of All Rogues’ Galleries”
Thursday, September 14, 2017 8:50 PM

Mother of all rogues' galleries Hillel Neuer: Even within the rogues' gallery that is the U.N. human rights Council, today’s council panel attacking Western democracies for imposing sanctions on dictatorships was the mother of all rogues' galleries. The panelists: 1. Lead panelist was UN expert Idriss Jazairy, who described Putin's Russia as a human rights victim. Coincidentally, as UN Watch revealed today, Jazairy received $50,000 from the Russian government. As Algerian ambassador to UN, he once said "antisemitism targets Arabs." 2. Alena Douhan, a Belarus academic with a soft spot for Russia, whose doctorate was on the principle of “non-interference” in countries’ “internal affairs.” 3. Alfred de Zayas, the Cuban-appointed expert for a “democratic and equitable international order.” Zayas has defended Iran's right to nuclear weapons, and writes books claiming Germany suffered a “genocide” in 1945. Zayas is a hero to Holocaust deniers. 4. Jean Ziegler, co-founder & 2002 recipient of the Qaddafi Human Rights Prize. In his presentation, Ziegler actually defended the murderous Maduro regime of Venezuela, which he said was being victimized by a U.S. “economic war.” 5. Panel Chair: the ambassador of Venezuela’s Maduro regime, Jorge Romero. He effusively thanked Ziegler for his kind words. 6. Peggy Hicks, a top official in the office of UN high commissioner Zeid, delivered the opening statement. A former Human Rights Watch official, we hoped she would provide a dissenting voice. Instead, she echoed the same line. And when Ziegler spouted pro-Maduro propaganda, Hicks was silent. Welcome to the U.N. human rights council. Posted by UN Watch …

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Mitzy de Ledezma: Expel Venezuela from this Council
Thursday, September 14, 2017 11:04 AM

Geneva, 12 September 2017 Thank you, Mr. President. I speak on behalf of United Nations Watch. My name is Mitzy de Ledezma. I am the wife of the mayor of Caracas, Antonio Ledezma, a political prisoner in Venezuela. Yesterday, the High Commissioner referred to his country team’s report on Venezuela, which documents widespread human rights violations committed by the country’s authorities. These violations aim to curtail any form of protest against the government. The report also finds systemic use of excessive force, including torture and ill treatment, arbitrary detention, and civilians  being tried by military courts. Mr. President, we wonder: Why is Venezuela still allowed to sit as a member of this Council? We wonder: Will the member states of this Council adopt a resolution, like the one tabled by United Nations Watch, which proposes that the membership of Venezuela to this Council be suspended? Thirty million Venezuelans will thank you for showing a firm hand today. Thank you, Mr. President.

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Russia gave $50,000 to UN expert who wrote report calling Russia a victim
Thursday, September 14, 2017 9:45 AM

GENEVA, Sept. 14, 2017 – After an investigator of the U.N. human rights council presented a report slamming the U.S. and EU for imposing sanctions on Russia, which he said amounted to “unilateral coercive measures,” a Geneva-based watchdog group took the floor to challenge the Special Rapporteur, former Algerian ambassador Idriss Jazairy, on the ethics of his receiving $50,000 from Russia last year for his mandate, as disclosed in a recent UN report. (See intervention below.) The U.N. report “makes the astounding claim that the Russian government of Vladimir Putin is a victim of human rights violations, and that the perpetrators are the EU and the U.S.,” said Hillel Neuer, executive director of UN Watch, a non-governmental human rights group. Russia immediately embraced the report, saying that Moscow “categorically rejected unilateral coercive measures” which amounted to “collective punishment” and “violated the standards of international law and fundamental human rights.” Russia’s delegate said “the sole authority to introduce sanctions should be the UN Security Council.” Sanctions had been imposed “following the legitimate right of the citizens of Crimea to exercise their right to self-determination.” Venezuela, Cuba and China are members of the 47-nation council, and have been able to influence the appointment of experts friendly to their regimes. UN Watch expressed concern over a “fixed” panel discussion this afternoon on Western sanctions against human rights abusers. The panel includes Jazairy and two other experts installed by Cuba—Qaddafi Prize co-founder Jean Ziegler, and Alfred de Zayas, a hero to Holocaust deniers—along with the Venezuelan ambassador, and a pro-Russian Belarus academic. …

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“Venezuela is under the control of organized criminal gangs”: Aunt of Leopoldo López testifies in the UN
Wednesday, September 13, 2017 5:41 PM

Geneva, 11 September 2017 Good afternoon. I am Julieta Lopez, the aunt of Leopoldo Lopez. Since 2014, I have come here to denounce, repeatedly, the torture and abuses committed against Leopoldo and the absolute lack of respect for human rights in Venezuela. I will not repeat what has been said up until now, but I will refer to the abuses that continue to be carried out against him. The first abuse is that he has been imprisoned, and even though he has been held under house arrest, this is already well-known, it has been reported so much. Let us talk, for example, about the fact that in the last few months in prison, Leopoldo was deprived of light and he was not able to read or write and this caused him damage to his vision. He was held for three days in a room without ventilation, without windows, without food, in the pitch black, closed in, without a notion of time and without knowing whether he would be there forever. This was torture worthy of the Nazis, or of any medieval tales. But make no mistake, we are talking about Venezuela. Right now. Well, this is just a small part of the saga. But I am not here to dwell on this. Leopoldo is, metaphorically, a flower in a meadow of flowers. All of the flowers in the meadow are the Venezuelans. And Leopoldo is one of these. Because all Venezuelans live in this meadow as prisoners. Just like Leopoldo. Leopoldo, the political prisoners, the students …

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U.N. Clash: Opposition Refutes Venezuela FM at Human Rights Council
Tuesday, September 12, 2017 12:42 AM

GENEVA, Sept. 11, 2017 – Venezuelan opposition figures, family members of political prisoners, and human rights activists gathered today at the 47-nation U.N. human rights council to refute the plenary address by foreign minister Jorge Arreaza. UN Watch, the Geneva-based non-governmental human rights group, together with Venezuela por Iniciative, organized a panel of leading Venezuelan voices, at a side event held below the human rights council chamber, to represent the views of the pro-democracy opposition. UN Watch has submitted a draft resolution (en español) calling or the suspension of Venezuela from the UNHRC, which has been published as an official UN document.  Executive director Hillel Neuer urged member states, especially Peru on behalf of the Lima Group, to adopt a resolution. Diego Arria, the former Venezuelan ambassador to the UN and Security Council president, called for the dictator Nicolas Maduro to be indicted by the International Criminal Court. Click here for Arria speech | En Español Julieta Lopez, aunt of pro-democracy leader and political prisoner Leopoldo Lopez. Click for speech. Rosaura Valentini, wife of political prisoner Yon Goiechocheca, said people are completely dehumanized. Child mortality declined to 1950s figures. Elderly die for lack of essential drugs. There is widepsread malnutrition. Mayors have been taken prisoner, despite having been chosen by the vote of the people. Violinist playing music was also taken as a prisoner. Hundreds of protesters are taken as prisoners. Click here for UNHRC plenary speech. Zair Mundaray, who holds the third highest position in the Ministry of Justice in charge of prosecutions, said that citizens in Venezuela need …

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