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UN Leader's Support for Jewish Temple a 'Breath of Fresh Air'

Western Wall, Courtesy GPO, Mark Neyman

JERUSALEM, Israel – After years of denying the historic Jewish connection to Israel, U.N. Secretary General António Guterres' statements confirming a Jewish Temple on the Temple Mount are like a "breath of fresh air," World Jewish Congress President Ron Lauder said.

At a meeting in New York this week, Guterres repeated what he said in an interview with Israel Radio, the World Jewish Congress reported.
"It is completely clear the Temple that the Romans destroyed in Jerusalem was a Jewish temple," Guterres said.

Lauder told Guterres he found it "obscene" that 20 out of 26 resolutions passed last year by the U.N. General Assembly were against Israel. Only three were against Syria, where more than a half million people have died, one each against Iran, North Korea and Crimea.

"The UN was built on the broken bones of the Jewish people after World War II," Lauder told Guterres. "It is an institution dedicated to making sure that what happened in the Holocaust never happens again…so it is particularly outrageous that the UN has been hijacked by Israel's enemies to delegitimize the Jewish state."

Guterres said while he couldn't prevent the U.N. Human Rights Council from passing anti-Israel resolutions, he's "committed to act with impartiality" on all matters relating to Israel and the Middle East."

Lauder also spoke positively about the U.S. administration.

"We are also very encouraged by the United States' commitment to the goal of honesty and change and support its stance that bodies such as the United Nations Human Rights Council must consistently be condemned as long as anti-Israel bias reigns free."

Israelis were particularly encouraged with the secretary general's stance on the U.N. report labeling the Jewish state "racist" and "apartheid."

A spokesman for Guterres said the report did not reflect the views of the secretary general.

The report was withdrawn and Rima Khalaf, who chaired the committee responsible for the report, resigned. Even after her resignation, she insisted the report exposed Israel's "war crimes against humanity."

Khalaf served as undersecretary general and executive secretary of the UN's Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ECSWA), which published the report.


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