The United Kingdom on Thursday rejected an Amnesty International report accusing Israel of apartheid.
“We do not agree with the use of this terminology,” a spokesperson for the UK’s Foreign and Commonwealth Development Office told The Times of Israel.
“Any judgment on whether serious crimes under international law have occurred is a matter for judicial decision, rather than for governments or non-judicial bodies,” they said.
The spokesperson added: “As a friend of Israel, we have a regular dialogue on human rights. This includes encouraging the government of Israel to abide by its obligations under international law and do all it can to uphold the values of equality for all.”
The UK has joined other countries who spoke out against the biased Amnesty report, including Germany, the USA, Australia and, of course, Israel.
Israel called the report “false, biased, and antisemitic” and accused the organisation of endangering the safety of Jews around the world.
“Amnesty’s report effectively serves as a green light… to harm not only Israel, but Jews around the world,” read a statement Monday from the Foreign Ministry spokesman’s office.
The statement said that the organization “uses double standards and demonization in order to delegitimize Israel. These are the exact components from which modern antisemitism is made.
“Its extremist language and distortion of historical context were designed to demonize Israel and pour fuel onto the fire of antisemitism,” it said.
The Israeli foreign ministry also said that Amnesty UK was “notorious for being corrupted by racism and xenophobia, and the organization’s secretary-general has previously accused Israel – with no basis or evidence – of murdering Arafat. It is not surprising that it took Amnesty eight years to back down from this serious and baseless accusation.”
Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said Monday that the rights group was no longer “a respected organization,”
“Today, it is precisely the opposite,” Lapid said in a video statement. “It isn’t a human rights organization, but just another radical organization which echoes propaganda without seriously checking the facts. Instead of seeking the truth, Amnesty echoes the same lies shared by terrorist organizations.”
He said the report’s claims are “delusional and disconnected from reality.”
“Israel isn’t perfect, but we are a democracy committed to international law, open to criticism, with a free press and a strong and independent judicial system,” he said. “Amnesty doesn’t call Syria — where the regime has murdered over half a million of its own citizens — an apartheid state. Nor Iran, or other murderous regimes around the world. Only Israel.”
Lapid said there was “simply no other explanation” for the organization’s inconsistency other than the fact that Israel is a Jewish state — apparently arguing the bias was of an antisemitic nature.
Antisemitism has no place in so-called human rights organisations and we hope Amnesty International withdraws its report which is filled with lies, distortions and covers up true crimes against humanity carried out by Palestinian groups such as Hamas.
We call upon the UK Government to officially recognise Jerusalem is Israel's capital and move its embassy to Jerusalem.