Statement by Lara Friedman, Americans for Peace Now
Delivered at the United Nations Security Council – October 14, 2016
Distinguished members of the Security Council,
As a representative of Americans for Peace Now – an organization that is committed to Israel’s existence and its future – it is not easy for me to speak before this body today.
It is not easy because while this forum will focus in large part on human rights violations by Israel, there are states represented here whose own human rights records are abysmal. There are even states in this forum that still do not recognize the existence of Israel, 70 years after that nation’s birth and despite its membership in the UN’s General Assembly.
It is also not easy for me to speak here today because of the deteriorating political climate in Israel as far as democracy is concerned. For some time now we have been witnessing an ugly campaign against courageous Israeli human rights and civil society NGOs – carried out by reactionary groups in Israel and by the Israeli government itself. Campaigns that target the legitimacy of NGOs like our Israeli sister organization, Shalom Achshav – Peace Now.
These groups are being targeted because their work reveals facts that some prefer to hide – facts that challenge the official Israeli government narrative.