United Nations official quits amid pressure

United Nations official quits amid pressure

The Western governments are "providing economic, military, diplomatic and political support to Israel, which effectively enables Israel to continue the project of colonization" of Palestine, said Mick Napier, an activist of the Scottish Palestine Solidarity Campaign from Edinburgh, Scotland.

Rima Khalaf, a Jordanian who heads Beirut-based ESCWA and is a UN undersecretary-general, announced her resignation at a hastily called press conference in the Lebanese capital, saying she couldn't accept being subjected to pressure from UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to withdraw the report.

"Therefore, we call on UN Secretary-General António Guterres to do what is right, reinstate the ESCWA report and undertake serious and concrete measures to hold Israel accountable for its persistent violations of worldwide law and human rights".

"The secretary-general can not accept that an under-secretary general or any other senior United Nations official that reports to him would authorize the publication under the United Nations name, under the United Nations logo, without consulting the competent departments and even himself". "It's about senior officials dealing with a matter that implicates other parts of the system - that they consult and they coordinate".

The report concluded that "available evidence established beyond a reasonable doubt that Israel is guilty of policies and practices that constitute the crime of apartheid". He rejected the report and ordered it removed from United Nations websites.

G20 leaders fail to reach agreements on free trade
Europe was keen on adding that trade should be "rules-based", meaning subject to rules of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). The G-20 is an informal forum on economic cooperation made up of 19 countries plus the European Union.

Meanwhile, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas awarded his office's highest honor to Khalaf.

U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, said earlier on Friday that Khalaf's resignation was appropriate and Israel's U.N. Ambassador Danny Danon said it was "long overdue".

Nasrallah said in a televised speech on Saturday that the incident served as a reminder of the "truth of this organisation, that it's weak. and it succumbs to the will of the United States and Israel".

At least one additional report commissioned by ESCWA, attempting to create an "innovative" and "scientific" methodology for estimated the cost of Israel's 50-year control of the territories, is still in the works, with the aim of demanding billions in reparations for Palestinians.

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