Senator Charles E. Schumer today slammed the United Nations for appointing William Schabas as head of the U.N Gaza Commission and urged the United States to defund and withdraw from the U.N. Human Rights Council if Schabas is not removed. Schabas has previously made anti-Israel comments and has participated in the 2012 Russell Tribunal on Palestine, evincing a pronounced anti-Israel bias and making him inappropriate to head any potential investigative report on Israel. Schumer today said that Schabas must be removed as head of the UN Gaza Commission otherwise the U.S. should totally defund the U.S. contribution to the Human Rights Council. The U.S. funds approximately 22 percent of the U.N’s annual budget and approximately $1.5 million to the U.N. Human Rights Council.
“Mr. Schabas’s previous comments make him obviously biased against Israel and a supremely inappropriate choice to head any investigation into the Gaza conflict. In fact, allowing Mr. Schabas to head the U.N. Gaza Commission is like allowing a biased prosecutor to be the judge, that’s why I’m urging the United States to both stop all funding and pull out of the U.N.’s Human Rights Council if Mr. Schabas is not removed. Any investigative findings from Schabas on Israel will be completely subjective and a sham,” said Schumer.
William Schabas is a law professor recently appointed to head the United National Human Rights Council’s commission of inquiry to investigate the Gaza conflict. Schabas has made prior comments suggesting strong anti-Israel feelings. Specifically, Schabas has stated, “my favorite would be Netanyahu within the dock of the International Criminal Court.” Schabas also stated, “Why are we going after the President of Sudan for Darfur and not the President of Israel for Gaza? Because politics.” Additionally, Schabas participated in the Russell Tribunal on Palestine.