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Jerusalem denies entry to UN official who blamed Israel for Oct. 7

"The time for Jewish silence is past," said FM Israel Katz, who called for the dismissal of U.N. Special Rapporteur Francesca Albanese.

Press briefing by Francesca Albanese, special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the occupied Palestinian Territories at the United Nations in New York City, Oct. 27, 2022. Credit: Lev Radin/Shutterstock.
Press briefing by Francesca Albanese, special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the occupied Palestinian Territories at the United Nations in New York City, Oct. 27, 2022. Credit: Lev Radin/Shutterstock.

Israel will bar Francesca Albanese, the United Nations special rapporteur on the “occupied Palestinian territories,” from entering the Jewish state, including Judea and Samaria.

Albanese blamed the slaughter of Jews by Hamas terrorists on Oct. 7 on Israeli “oppression,” Foreign Minister Israel Katz and Interior Minister Moshe Arbel announced the decision on Monday, following the U.N. envoy’s offensive tweet on Saturday.

“The time for Jewish silence is past. For the @UN to regain its credibility, its leadership @antonioguterres must unequivocally renounce the anti-Semitic statements made by their ‘Special Envoy’ @FranceskAlbs and remove her from her position immediately,” Katz tweeted on Monday.

“Barring her entry to Israel will serve as a stark reminder of the atrocities committed by Hamas, including the ruthless targeting of innocents,” Katz continued.

Responding to French President Emmanuel Macron’s comment at a ceremony on Wednesday honoring the 42 French Israelis murdered on Oct. 7, where he referred to the Hamas invasion as “the greatest antisemitic massacre of our century,” Albanese tweeted:

“The ‘greatest anti-Semitic massacre of our century’? No, Mr. @EmmanuelMacron. The victims of 10/7 were not killed because of their Judaism, but in response to Israel’s oppression. France & the international community did nothing to prevent it. My respects to the victims.”

Katz on Sunday rebuked Albanese for her comments, calling them “deeply troubling” and demanded her dismissal.

“I call on Secretary-General Guterres to fire @FranceskAlbs immediately. The time of Jewish silence in the face of such misrepresentations has passed. We must stand strong and vocal against such narratives,” Katz tweeted.

Albanese has frequently courted controversy among Israel supporters for singling out Israel for blame in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. She has made frequent comparisons between Israel and Nazi Germany.

When JNS asked Albanese in December whether Hamas was justified in invading Israel and killing Israeli security personnel, she said, “Why is this so unbelievable? You seem to be puzzled by this. What is the right to resist?”

She also accused Israel and American evangelical Christians of weaponizing antisemitism to silence her and other critics of Israel.

“Israel occupies the Palestinian territory illegally, continuing to colonize the land, to brutalize the people, to let its armed settlers go around and terrorize everyone,” Albanese told JNS. “The Palestinians have no recourse to justice, because the Israeli army is not there to protect the Palestinians. It is there to protect the settlers, who are illegal.”

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