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UN investigator regrets anti-Semitic cartoon

UN investigator regrets anti-Semitic cartoon

A U.N. human rights expert investigating Israel's treatment of Palestinians expressed regret on Monday for posting an anti-Semitic cartoon on his blog, but rejected calls to resign his role saying critics were using a "careless" mistake to attack him.
U.S. academic Richard Falk said he didn't spot what he called "the anti-Semitic connotations" when he published a caricature showing a dog wearing a Jewish skullcap and an American flag eating human bones while urinating on a statue representing justice.
"It was a mistake and I regret it," Falk told The Associated Press in a telephone interview from the United States, where he is a research professor in international law at the University of California at Santa Barbara.
Falk, 80, said the offending symbols in the cartoon were so small he didn't see them until they were pointed out to him.
"It was careless, but it had nothing to do with my mandate," he said.
Jewish groups last week called for Falk to be removed from his post, while the U.S. ambassador to the Geneva-based U.N. Human Rights Council, Eileen Donahoe, urged him to resign.
"Mr. Falk's continued offensive postings and biased reporting does nothing to further the human rights of Palestinians or Israelis, nor anything to advance peace in the region," Donahoe said in a statement Thursday.
Falk said he planned to continue his mandate until it expires in 2014.
It isn't the first time Falk has courted criticism. The former Princeton professor, who is Jewish, has compared Israel to Nazi Germany and questioned the U.S. government's account of the Sept. 11 terror attacks.
Shortly after his appointment by the Human Rights Council in 2008 he was detained upon arrival at Ben-Gurion international airport and later expelled by Israeli authorities who accused him of being biased against the Jewish state.


Updated : 2021-04-11 10:21 GMT+08:00