WJC Calls Out Former UN Special Rapporteur on Racism for Condemnation of IHRA


NEW YORK – In response to former United Nations Special
Rapporteur E. Tendayi Achiume’s call for countries to suspend the adoption of the
International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of
antisemitism, the World Jewish Congress issued the following statement:

“It is deeply regrettable
that having resigned her post and on the last day of her mandate, Ms. E.
Tendayi Achiume, UN Special
Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia
and related intolerance, decided to engage in petty and ill-informed
politics. In her final report to the United Nations General Assembly, she
attacks the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition
of antisemitism, a widely acclaimed tool in the fight against this ancient
scourge. Most egregiously, she calls upon countries to suspend the definition’s
adoption and promotion.

“Ms. Tendayi Achiume
issued this report after consulting only a handful of arbitrary and one-sided
sources. She did not make any effort to seek the opinion of those who are most
directly impacted by antisemitism, namely Jewish communities across the globe
and their umbrella organization, the World Jewish Congress, which has
consistently cooperated with and provided information to her office since the
beginning of her term. In issuing her report, the former Special Rapporteur
denies the right of the Jewish people and of Jewish communities to define Jew-hatred
and instead, assigns that task to others.

“Additionally, the former
Special Rapporteur did not bother to consult with IHRA itself, an international
organization dedicated to Holocaust education, research and remembrance, or some
40 countries and hundreds of municipalities, sports clubs, universities,
businesses and associations that have successfully adopted and implemented the

“Rather than advancing
the fight against antisemitism, the former Special Rapporteur has significantly
weakened it, thereby providing aid and comfort to Jew-haters everywhere. Is
this the ‘open and inclusive process’ she touts in her report?

We appreciate the efforts
of the following countries that backed the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s
working definition of antisemitism and stood against the former United Nations
Special Rapporteur’s recommendation: Albania, Australia, Austria, Bulgaria,
Canada, Cyprus, Czechia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Hungary, Israel, Italy,
Romania, Spain, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay and the European Union.”

About the World Jewish Congress

The World Jewish Congress (WJC) is the international organization representing Jewish communities in 100 countries to governments, parliaments and international organizations.

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