July 08, 2021

Netherlands pulls out of UN's Durban IV conference over antisemitism concerns

The Netherlands will not participate in the UN conference against racism known as "Durban IV" due to concerns the conference would devolve into a heated discussion with antisemitic rhetoric about Israel and its policies. The decision was announced by the Foreign Minister Sigrid Kaag in response to questions from Kees van der Staaij from SGP and Gert-Jan Segers from ChristenUnie, ANP reported.

The two parliamentarians approached Kaag with a letter from the Israel Information and Documentation Center (CIDI) sent to the minister. The letter revisited incidents that occurred during the first Durban conferences.

CIDI said that the 2001 World Conference Against Racism in Durban, South Africa, was “the stage for intolerance, antisemitism and unjustified accusations against Israel.”

In an explanation for her decision, Kaag spoke of "the historical burden of the Durban process, the risk of repetition of abuse of this platform for antisemitic expressions and the disproportionate and one-sided attention to Israel as reflected in the original Durban statement.”

The Netherlands also did not participate in the second or third editions of the Durban conference.

The UN conference is set to take place in September this year. This year’s edition marks the 20th anniversary of the Durban Declaration, which was adopted at the UN’s notorious 2001 World Conference Against Racism.

Source: nltimes