UN Circulating Document Alleging Israelis ‘Harvesting Human Organs’
Just Journalism, a British think tank monitoring coverage of Israel, reports that the UN Human Rights Commission will examine the libelous charge.
March 31, 2010 - 12:00 am
The basis for EAFORD’s accusation is the Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet’s August 28, 2009, article entitled “Our sons are plundered of their organs” in which writer Donald Bostrom suggested that Israeli soldiers were killing Palestinians in the West Bank for the purpose of organ theft and sale within Israel. Bostrom wrote:
We know that Israel has a great need for organs, that there is a vast and illegal trade of organs which has been running for many years now, that the authorities are aware of it and that doctors in managing positions at the big hospitals participate, as well as civil servants at various levels. We also know that young Palestinian men disappeared, that they were brought back after five days, at night, under tremendous secrecy, stitched back together after having been cut from abdomen to chin.
Bostrom later appeared on CNN to say that he had no proof of any of the outrageous insinuations made in his article and relied solely on testimony of Palestinians. Nevertheless, his story was picked up and recycled on leading Arab news channels such as Al Jazeera and Al-Arabiya, prompting at least one fabricated report, in the Algerian daily El-Khabar, that Interpol had uncovered a “Jewish gang” said to be “involved in the abduction of children from Algeria and trafficking of their organs.”
In reporting on the UN’s certification of what the EAFORD document states, the National Post noted that the Human Rights Council is complicit in the document’s composition:
In contrast to what the UN reviewers approved for the EAFORD statement, they told UN Watch [a Geneva-based group that monitors the UN for its perceived bias against Israel] recently not to use the word “regime” when referring to the governments of Sudan, Burma, Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Zimbabwe because it would offend those countries, said Hillel Neuer, the group’s executive director.
It is remarkable that the UN’s circulation of EAFORD’s document has not been cited by the British press insofar as the “Israeli organ theft” allegation was cited by Baroness Jenny Tonge, who was quoted in the Palestine Telegraph newspaper, of which she is a patron, reaffirming the need for Israel to establish an inquiry into claims that its human relief workers in post-earthquake Haiti had harvested victims’ organs for use in Israeli transplants. Baroness Tonge’s statement was widely reported in the UK, as was the consequence of it: she was sacked as the Liberal Democrats health spokesperson in the House of Lords in light of what Nick Clegg, the party’s leader, described as her “unacceptable comments.”