Netanyahu, at General Assembly, denounces ‘absurdities,’ anti-Semitism in UN decisions

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel addresses the General Assembly’s annual general debate. UN Photo/Cia Pak

19 September 2017 – Citing “a great revolution in Israel’s standing” in the world, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today denounced the “absurdities” and “global ant-Semitism” in United Nations decisions on Israel and warned Iran of the “mortal peril” it faced in threatening to annihilate his country.

“For too long, the epicentre of global anti-Semitism has been right here at the UN,” he told the General Assembly on the opening day of its 72nd annual general debate, while praising Secretary-General António Guterres’ statement “that denying Israel's right to exist is anti-Semitism, pure and simple.”

Pointing to the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO) declaring the Tomb of the Patriarchs in Hebron as a Palestinian World Heritage Site, he said: “That’s worse than fake news; that’s fake history,” noting that the tomb is revered as the grave of the three Jewish biblical patriarchs.

Turning to Iran, Mr. Netanyahu warned: “Today, I have a simple message to Ayatollah Khamenei, the dictator of Iran: The light of Israel will never be extinguished.” He cited daily Iranian vows to destroy Israel, and called for “fixing or nixing” the international deal to curb Iran’s nuclear programme, because it is slated to end after 10 years.

“Those who threaten us with annihilation put themselves in mortal peril,” he said, warning that Israel will act to prevent Iran from establishing permanent military bases in Syria and producing deadly weapons in Syria or in Lebanon. “As long as Iran’s regime seeks the destruction of Israel, Iran will face no fiercer enemy than Israel.”

He said Israel’s greater world stature is due the fact so many countries have finally woken up to what Israel can do for them in cutting-edge technology, agriculture, water, cybersecurity, medicine and autonomous vehicles. “After 70 years, the world is embracing Israel, and Israel is embracing the world,” he added.

Referring ti the Middle East conflict, Mr. Netanyahu said Israel is committed to achieving peace with all its Arab neighbours, including the Palestinians.

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