CFI Honorary President Lord Polak CBE restated his call for the Government to ban Hezbollah and raised concerns about the UN’s ongoing bias against Israel, during House of Lords debate on the Lords International Relations Committee (IRC) report into the Middle East.
Lord Polak criticised several “blind spots” in the IRC report, stating that there is no mention of Iran’s support for Hamas and Hezbollah in the report.
He underlined that regarding the peace process, the report is “totally one-sided”, adding that “there is condemnation of Israel but where is the condemnation of the Palestinians’ incitement, the Hamas control of Gaza, the rocket attacks and the terror tunnels? That is not in the report at all”.
Lord Polak said that the report’s suggestion that the balance of power in the delivery of peace lies with Israel is also one-sided. He asserted: “The best way to show a determined attachment to a two-state solution is to encourage the two sides to sit together and, while at it, encourage the Palestinians not to be the two sides on their own”.
The CFI Honorary President reiterated his call for the Government to ban the Hezbollah terror group in its entirety, stating: “I have raised this before and I do not apologise for raising it again. Hezbollah has 150,000 Iranian rockets in south Lebanon facing Israel. Hezbollah is proscribed by so many countries in its entirety—the United States, Canada, the Netherlands, the Gulf Cooperation Council, the Arab League—but not us. Hezbollah does not distinguish among itself so again I call on the Government and the Minister to look again at proscribing Hezbollah in full”.
He also highlighted the “serious injustice” faced by Jews who were forced to flee Arab countries, emphasising that while the UN had recognised the rights of Palestinian refugees, they had not awarded the same treatment to other victims of same conflict “that is, the Jews, Christians and other refugees from Arab countries”.
Lord Polak pointed out that “over the years there have been more than 170 resolutions on Palestinian refugees, 13 UN agencies and organisations have been mandated or created to provide protection and relief for the Palestinian refugees, and tens of billions of dollars have been disbursed by the international community to provide for the Palestinians. But during those same years there have been no UN resolutions, no support from UN agencies and no financial assistance to ameliorate the plight of Jewish or other refugees from Arab lands”.
He said that “In reality two refugee populations were created – Palestinians, and Jews displaced by Arab countries” yet the UN has focused on Palestinians.
Lord Polak ended his speech by urging the International Relations Committee to “eradicate blind spots and hope that the UK will do all it can to bring the Palestinians and Israelis around the table to hammer out a solution, which I believe is within reach”.