The UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia — an agency based in Lebanon, and comprised of 18 Muslim-majority member states, including what is identified as the State of Palestine — released the report Wednesday.
In its conclusion, the report says it “establishes, on the basis of scholarly inquiry and overwhelming evidence, that Israel is guilty of the crime of apartheid”.
The report was co-authored by Richard Falk, a former UN special rapporteur on Palestinian human rights who has compared Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians to the actions of the Nazis, and Virginia Tilley, a professor of political science at Southern Illinois University.
Nikki Haley, the US envoy to the UN, condemned the report, stating: “The United States is outraged by the report…The United Nations Secretariat was right to distance itself from this report, but it must go further and withdraw the report altogether”.
Israel’s Ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon, also criticised the report. In a statement he said: “The attempt to smear and falsely label the only true democracy in the Middle East by creating a false analogy is despicable and constitutes a blatant lie”.
A UN spokesman said the report was published without consulting the international body’s Secretariat and “does not reflect the views of the Secretary-General”.