Is the New UN Secretary General a Friend of Israel?

For many, many years the United Nations has unfairly condemned Israel while turning a blind eye on some of the world’s biggest human rights violators.  Former Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, seemed disinterested in efforts to curb anti-Israel bias.  So, when current Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, took office January 1, 2017, there was hope that the new S-G would lead the General Assembly in developing a more balanced perspective of the Jewish nation.

Earlier this week, Guterres paid a visit to Israel where he met with both President Reuven Rivlin and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, where he stated that the “idea, intention or will to destroy the state of Israel is something totally unacceptable from my perspective.”

Citing UN Security Resolution 1701 (regarding weapon shipments to Hezbollah), Netanyahu emphasized that “the UN is failing miserably in its mandate to keep Hezbollah from arming itself.”  To which Guterres replied, “I will do everything in my capacity to make sure that UNIFIL fully meets its mandate.”

Certainly, this Secretary-General appears to be far more friendly to Israel than his predecessor.  He agrees that calling for the destruction of Israel is a form of modern antisemitism, though he clearly stated that he sometimes disagrees with positions of the Israeli government.  (Fair enough!)

Let’s pray for the UN, particularly Secretary-General Guterres.  While the Secretary-General does not have full control or authority over UN members, his leadership is critical in this day and age when the world wants to delegitimize and destroy Israel.

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