Centro Simon Wiesenthal
Cabello 3872, PB “C” (C1425APR) – Buenos Aires – Argentina
Teléfono: (5411) 4802-1744 * Fax: (5411) 4802-1774
Buenos Aires, January 2, 2009
The Simon Wiesenthal Center slammed a statement issued by Venezuela, which unilaterally criticizes Israel for the current situation in Gaza. The official Declaration (http://www.mci.gob.ve/noticias/1/187158/gobierno_de_venezuela.html ) states that President Hugo Chávez “expressed his indignation at the criminal attack by Israel in bombing the Palestinian people and urges a campaign to denounce these infamous violent actions, aimed at annihilating the hope for life of an entire people”.
“This unilateral condemnation of Israel by President Chávez exempts Hamas of all responsibility for the tragic events taking place. Not a single word on Hamas unilateral announcement the six-month truce with Israel; its abuse of Palestinian women, children and elderly as human shields placed on the roofs of mosques and schools from whence thousand of Hamas terrorist rockets are fired constantly against Israeli civilians. Jewish lives or self-defence are apparently inconsequential for President Chavez”, noted Dr. Shimon Samuels, Director for International Relations of the Simon Wiesenthal Center.
“Two weeks ago, Chávez, together with Presidents Cristina Kirchner (Argentina) and Lula da Silva (Brazil) signed a joint Declaration against Antisemitism. His refusal to condemn Hamas is a first violation of his obligations under that Declaration. Hamas’ Charter highlights the notorious forgery, Protocols of the Elders of Zion, as undisputed evidence of Jewish plans to control the world (Clause 32). Such sentiments are part of Hamas’ worldview and threaten Jews worldwide. Indeed, Venezuela’s benediction can encourage assaults on Jewish communities in the Americas”, added Sergio Widder, Latin American Representative of the Center.
“In brief, this Declaration by Venezuela constitutes a direct support to Hamas terrorism and for its antisemitic credo”, Samuels and Widder concluded.
For further information contact Shimon Samuels at +336 09770158, or Sergio Widder at +54911 4425-1306.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400.000 members. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the Council of Europe, the OAS and the Latin American Parliament.