Israel first democracy to expel Human Rights Watch staffer, director says | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

Israel first democracy to expel Human Rights Watch staffer, director says

Israel is set to expel a Human Rights Watch employee, its executive director Ken Roth said on Sunday, denouncing the forthcoming deportation of one of his staffers.

US citizen Omar Shakir, the New York-based rights group's director for Israel and the Palestinian territories, is to be deported from Israel on Monday over his alleged support of a boycott of the country, AFP said.

Israel accuses him of being a supporter of the banned Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement, which calls for a broad-ranging boycott to pressure Israel to end its rights abuses against Palestinians.

The expulsion, upheld by Israel’s supreme court, would make Shakir the first HRW official to be expelled from the country under a controversial 2017 law allowing the deportation of foreigners who support the boycott, according to authorities.

Israel's supreme court orders expulsion of Human Rights Watch campaigner

Shakir told the Associated Press on Sunday that he will remain in his position and continue doing the “important, urgent work” of documenting violations in Israel and the Palestinian territories from abroad.

“We’re talking about a half-century-long occupation defined by systematic repression and institutional discrimination,” Shakir told the AP. “That requires important, urgent work, and it’s unfortunate that I won’t be able to do it on the ground, but we won’t stop doing it.”

HRW denies Shakir supports the BDS movement and accuses Israel of seeking to suppress criticism of policies towards Palestinians.

"I cannot think of another democracy that has barred a Human Rights Watch researcher," Roth told AFP in Jerusalem.

Roth said countries including North Korea, Venezuela and Iran have expelled HRW researchers, but that no functioning democracy had taken such action

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Roth is terribly mistaken by characterizing Israel as a "democracy"; at best, it has devolved into a wickedly apartheid, self-proclaimed theocracy, with nuclear weapons.

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