An informal meeting at the United Nations Security Council Friday roundly criticized Israeli settlements as a “obstacle for peace” in an effort to push for a formal Security Council resolution against Israel.
The meeting was initiated by Egypt, Malaysia, Senegal, Angola and Venezuela – non-permanent Security Council member states – at the request of the Palestinians. Among the speakers were representatives of the anti-Israeli NGOs B’Tselem and Peace Now.
Hagai El-Ad, executive director of B’Tselem, which promotes Israel as an apartheid state, said “with every breath the Palestinians take, they are breathing an occupation. Israel cannot call itself a democracy while occupying another people.”
El-Ad went on to criticize Israeli security forces for their mistreatment of Palestinians and said the Security Council should take actions against Israel.
In his address to the Security Council, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. for Special Political Affairs David Pressman said the U.S. was “deeply concerned about continued settlement activity,” and which they consider “corrosive to the cause of peace.”
“Just two days after anti-Israel forces approved a resolution intending to sever the historical bond between the Jewish people and Jerusalem, Israeli organizations chose to slander and besmirch Israel’s good name at an event organized by the Palestinian delegation,” Danon said in a statement. “It is unfortunate that Israeli organizations have joined the Palestinian attempts to wage diplomatic terror against Israel at the U.N.”
Peace Now representative Lara Friedman said “Israeli policy in the settlements is ending the chance for peace. I call on the Security Council to send a message to Israel and to end this policy.”
B’Tselem receives 10 percent of its $2.5 million annual budget from the New Israel Fund (NIF), a group that gets major funding from left-wing billionaire George Soros, Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor, told JNS.org. The New Israel Fund promotes its “progressive” U.S.-based political agenda through the facade of human rights, he said. The rest of B’Tselem’s budget comes from European governments.