“It puts a stamp on our being occupiers”

Director of the International Legal Forum, Yifa Segal, shares her view of the recent UN resolution and its impact.

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Eliran Aharon,

Yifa Segal
Yifa Segal
photo: Eliran Aharon

Attorney Yifa Segal, the Director of the International Legal Forum, spoke with Arutz Sheva about the recent anti-Israel resolution adopted by the UN Security Council.

“Unfortunately, we were not surprised by the American action in the UN." Segal said. "But if you look at the essence of what Obama did, then people should be surprised. It goes against decades-long American policy; it goes against the entire Congress where just last month, 88 out of 100 senators signed a letter urging Obama to oppose one-sided UN intervention in the Israel-Arab conflict; and it goes against the American people. It’s very radical to take such a step in a lame duck period against the will of the people and the will of Congress and against decades of American policy.”

When asked about the expected impact of the resolution, Segal said: “It's too early to say what the impact will be. The resolution was not taken under chapter 7 but rather under chapter 6, which is not a binding resolution. Still the Security Council is not the same as the General Assembly. It has a more important role shaping the discourse in the international community.”

She added: “I’m sure that it will make things harder for us. It puts a stamp on our being occupiers, even though it’s absurd that a Jew living in a place that is historically Jewish, near a holy site in Eastern Jerusalem or in Judea and Samaria should be a violation of international law.”

Speaking about the UN, Segal said: “It demonstrates what the UN really is. It was established after World War II to keep world peace and protect human rights and all the other beautiful things that are written in its charter. But today a majority of the countries in the UN are not democratic, and even ridicule the ideas of democracy and human rights.”

“The UN is a political entity driven by a political agenda,” she continued. “If you look at the blocks of nations working together to protect each other, then you understand everything that happens there, why Syria is not condemned, etc. It also explains why Israel is the #1 scapegoat. We don't have any block that supports us.”

When asked if a Donald Trump administration is likely to change anything, Segal said, “I believe that there was an inherent flaw in the foundations of the UN, not to have any rules or regulations about the basic principles of the charter. If you look at other international organizations like the World Trade Organization (WTO), for example. In order to become a member of the WTO, you have to jump through all sorts of hoops, and change the laws and trade regulations in your country in order to qualify for membership, and if you violate these laws, then you get kicked out.”

“The same thing should be established in a new international entity that is truly about peace and human rights and democracy by establishing certain standards for acceptance. This change is way overdue. I've already suggested this change to my friends in Congress and I plan to continue once the new administration begins.”

The International Legal Forum is a hub for lawyers, organizations, and activists from around the world working on justice, equality, and human rights in Israel and the Middle East.