Arab and Islamic countries have witnessed a major setback to an effective, decades-long campaign to isolate Israel at the United Nations, as the reviled Jewish state was elected to head a key U.N. committee for the first time.
Israel’s Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon was elected Monday to chair the General Assembly’s legal committee (aka the sixth committee), which deals with matters of international law and issues such as the long-stalled effort to establish a comprehensive international terrorism convention.
In line with the process of rotation among geographical groups, the Western European and Others group (WEOG) had the right to nominate a candidate to chair the sixth committee for the coming session. The group, which includes such non-European democracies as the U.S., Canada and Australia, put forward Israel’s ambassador as its candidate.
Requiring 77 votes to get the post, Danon won 109. Twenty-three countries abstained and in 43 cases countries wrote in on their ballots other members of WEOG, none of which was standing for the chair.