pink slip

Lawmakers call to remove U.N. rapporteur on Palestinian territories

Francesca Albanese claimed the U.S. is ‘subjugated by the Jewish lobby’ and defended Hamas rocket attacks

Atilgan Ozdil/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Francesca Albanese, delivers a speech during the UN Forum on the Question of Palestine at the United Nations Trusteeship Council Chamber in New York on May 18, 2018.

A bipartisan group of House members urged the removal of the U.N.’s special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories, Francesca Albanese, in response to “outrageous antisemitic statements” made by the Italian lawyer.

Eleven members of Congress signed onto a letter, sent Monday, which addressed recent revelations in The Times of Israel that Albanese had claimed in 2014 that the U.S. is “subjugated by the Jewish lobby” and Europe is “subjugated by… the sense of guilt about the Holocaust,” and arguing that indiscriminate rocket attacks by Hamas are “the only means [Palestinians] have” to “defend themselves.”

The letter cites other comments by Albanese that its signatories say prove “these comments were not simply a mistake, but rather a fundamental part of her worldview,” adding that “Albanese’s comments are only the latest in a pattern of antisemitic behavior and rhetoric at the UN, which is obsessively focused on the world’s only Jewish State.”

Albanese has sought to “distance” herself from her past comments, and said they were “wrongly mischaracterized as antisemitic,” dismissing the report as a politically motivated attack.

The communique is addressed to U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres and U.N High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Turk. The signatories include Reps. Brad Sherman (D-CA), Dina Titus (D-NV), Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), Scott Peters (D-CA), Jared Golden (D-ME), Donald Norcross (D-NJ), Maria Elvira Salazar (R-FL), Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA), Ritchie Torres (D-NY), Brian Mast (R-FL) and Jim Costa (D-CA).

“You have stated that ‘there is no room for antisemitism in the UN,’” the letter continues, “but it seems you do have room for Special Rapporteur Albanese and others who have repeatedly made statements that are antisemitic.”

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