Israel UN envoy slams Falk over accusation of 'ethnic cleansing'
Richard Falk is an 'embarrassment to the UN,' Israeli envoy Aharon Leshno Yaar said in response to Falk's claim that Israeli settlement building and eviction of Palestinians from homes amounted to 'ethnic cleansing.'
Israel's United Nations Envoy Aharon Leshno Yaar called Richard Falk an "embarrassment to the United Nations," after the academic charged Israel with ethnic cleansing on Monday.
Falk, who is also an investigator for the UN, said earlier in the day that Israel's expansion of settlements in East Jerusalem and eviction of Palestinians from their homes is a form of ethnic cleansing.
Speaking to Haaretz, Leshno Yaar said Falk is the man who "claims that it is unclear who stands behind the terror attacks of 9/11 and calls IDF soldiers Nazis."
Falk has been admonished in the past by UN Secretary General Ben Ki-moon for comments that he made about the 9/11 terror attacks.
"Israel doesn’t participate with Falk," Leshno Yaar said, adding that he leaves the room when he speaks.
Falk made the comments while speaking to the UN Human Rights Council as it prepared to pass resolutions condemning settlement building in the West Bank and East Jerusalem.
The "continued pattern of settlement expansion in East Jerusalem combined with the forcible eviction of long-residing Palestinians are creating an intolerable situation" in the part of the city previously controlled by Jordan, he said.
This situation "can only be described in its cumulative impact as a form of ethnic cleansing," Falk declared.
In his speech, Falk said he would like the Human Rights Council to ask the International Court of Justice to look at Israeli behavior in the occupied territories.
This should focus on whether the prolonged occupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem had elements of "colonialism, apartheid and ethnic cleansing inconsistent with international humanitarian law," the investigator declared.