Simon Wiesenthal Center Decries UN Secretary Ban Blaming Israel Occupation for Gaza

October 13,2014

The Simon Wiesenthal Center criticized UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon for telling a donor's conference in Cairo that Israel's occupation was the root cause of this summer's war in Gaza.

"Secretary Ban knows full well that the root cause of the recent conflict in Gaza is not "occupation" but rather the refusal of much of the Arab world to recognize the historic right of the Jewish people to a tiny state in the Middle East," said Rabbis Marvin Hier and Rabbi Abraham Cooper Dean and Founder and Associate Dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center, a leading Jewish Human Rights NGO in a statement released in Jerusalem.

Center officials, who met with the UN Secretary General at the height of the conflict in Gaza, added, "The Palestinians also have responsibility for triggering this summer's conflict by voting in terrorist Hamas to control their lives in Gaza."

"And as the world focuses exclusively on Gaza, they would do well to at least acknowledge the suffering and damage heaped on Israeli civilians by Hamas over the last nine years," Hier and Cooper concluded.

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The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).