Venezuela’s ambassador to the United Nations on Friday compared Israel to the Nazi regime, asking whether the Jewish state planned to “wage a final solution” against the Palestinians.
In a speech to an informal meeting of the Security Council at the UN headquarters in New York on “protection” for Palestinian civilians, Rafael Ramirez said: “What does Israel plans do to with the Palestinians? Will they disappear? Does Israel seek probably to wage a final solution? The sort of solution that was perpetrated against the Jews?”
His comments drew a furious response from Israel’s ambassador Danny Danon, who accused Ramirez of “clear anti-Semitism.” The remarks came a day after Israel marked Holocaust Remembrance Day, in memory of the six million Jews murdered by the Nazis during World War II.
“This statement by the Venezuelan ambassador is clear anti-Semitism against the Jewish state,” Danon said, according to a statement released by the Israeli mission to the UN. “His remarks are a direct continuation to the Palestinian representative’s statement a few days ago comparing Israel to the Nazis.
“The Palestinians are bringing anti-Semitism into the halls of the UN and are legitimizing racists and crass language in the parliament of nations,” Danon added.
The Palestinian Authority’s UN envoy Riyad Mansour late last month compared the recent spate of Palestinian attacks on Israelis to the action by Jewish resistance fighters during the Holocaust, and drew a parallel between the Israeli government and the Nazi regime. The claims were condemned by the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, who called the “offensive, hateful anti-Semitic” remarks “a desecration of the memory of the victims of the Nazi genocide.”
Ramirez’s comments were “unequivocally condemned” by the US, United Kingdom and France, Danon’s office said, and the Venezuelan ambassador apologized to the “Jewish people if they were offended by the remarks.”