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Jewish Groups Call Durban III Boycott; Israel Won’t Attend

Israel has announced it will not attend the Durban III “anti-racism” conference next year. Jewish groups in the US call for a boycott.
By Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu
First Publish: 12/26/2010, 3:01 PM / Last Update: 12/26/2010, 3:13 PM

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Israel has announced it will not participate in the Durban III “anti-racism” conference scheduled in New York in September 2011 as American Jewish groups appeal to all other countries to boycott what promises to be an anti-Zionist hate session.

The United Nations General Assembly on Friday overwhelmingly adopted a resolution celebrating the first Durban Conference. U.S. Ambassador to the U.N., Susan Rice, said the United States voted against the resolution “because the Durban declaration process has included ugly displays of intolerance and anti-Semitism, and we do not want to see that commemorated."

The Israel Foreign Ministry stated, “Israel regrets that a resolution on an important subject – elimination of racism – has been diverted and politicized by the automatic majority at the U.N. by linking it to the Durban Declaration and Program of Action (2001) that many states would prefer to forget.

“The Durban Conference of 2001, with its anti-Semitic undertones and displays of hatred for Israel and the Jewish world, left us with scars that will not heal quickly.”

Canada already has said it will not attend Durban III so long as it maintains an anti-Israeli agenda. The United States and Israel walked out of the 2001 conference, the first of several countries to do so, after a draft resolution singled out Israel and compared Zionism to racism. The United States and Israel also boycotted Durban II in 2009.

The American Jewish Congress and B’nai Brith, as well as many Orthodox Jewish organizations have called on other nations to boycott Durban III. The ADL stated after the United Nations vote that Durban III “will undermine rather than advance the fight against discrimination. The Durban process was tainted by the very bias it purported to work against."