David Trimble to UN Human Rights Council: ‘your report undermines peace’

Nobel Peace laureate David Trimble will today deliver a statement on behalf of NGO UN Watch to the UN Human Rights Council saying its report on Israeli settlements “undermines and subverts” the peace process.

The report, published in January, is to be presented to the HRC today. It recommends an immediate withdrawal of Jewish Israelis from settlements and that governments and multinational corporations reconsider their relationships with Israel.

Lord Trimble, who is a former First Minister for Northern Ireland, is due to criticise the report strongly. His statement says: “Negotiations can only be by the Israelis and the Palestinians. Others at best can play a helpful role. But outside bodies purporting to make authoritative pronouncements on major issues over the heads of the parties can only undermine and subvert the peace process.”

He notes the Council’s habit of disproportionately focusing its scrutiny on Israel, saying: “I urge you to heed the criticism by successive UN secretaries-general of this Council’s habit of singling out only one specific country, to the exclusion of virtually everything else.”

UN Watch, a Geneva - based NGO which monitors UN compliance with its charter, wrote when the report was published: “In the entire history of the HRC, there have been seven one-sided inquiry missions on Israel, and only five on the rest of the world combined.”

Last updated: 12:35pm, March 18 2013