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News Releases 2017

Divergent Visions of 2030 – The Iranian Supreme Leader and the Saudi Crown Prince

Paris, 8 November 2017

Dr. Shimon Samuels, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO, explained that “this week, a third of the Executive Board of 58 States – the motor of UNESCO – will be elected, for a four-year term.”

“Next, the new Chair of the Board will be selected from the Asian Group, which is led by Iran as the sole contender.”

"Following the Centre’s exposure of Iran's ‘UNESCO Prison’ in Dezful close to the Iraqi border, the arrest of teachers on UNESCO International Mother Language Day and of journalists on UNESCO Press Freedom Day, the Delegate of South Korea in disgust, put forward his candidacy,” noted Samuels.

Blog by Shimon Samuels posted in The Times of Israel
3 November 2017

The concept of “nation” has no universal definition, but has been acknowledged as “a population which shares, inter alia: a common history, traditions, language, territory and, sometimes, faith.

The Italian, German and Polish nations existed virtually, while atomized in principalities or partitioned under foreign occupation.War has constantly shifted borders for the French and Russian nations. Britons existed centuries before the consolidation of a Great Britain. Each of these “nations” accrued power by occupying others with a policy of divide and rule.

Thus was born the 1917 Balfour Declaration — highly prized by the nascent Zionist Jewish national liberation movement — but a function of British colonial policy displayed by competing promises to every possible ally of the moment: Muslim and Hindu in the Indian Raj, “Palestinian Jews” and Arab leaders in Arabia.

In the midst of war against the Prussian, Austro-Hungarian and Ottoman empires, France, Britain and little Belgium carved up Africa with lines drawn on maps cutting through tribal territories or “proto-nations”.

"Centre thanks FIFA President for his letter of 7 August indicating appropriate action."

"Our campaign will end only when FIFA expels the Palestinian Football Association (PFA) for glorifying terrorism..."

Zurich, 29 October 2017

In a letter to Gianni Infantino, International Federation of Football Associations (FIFA) President, Simon Wisenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, "thanked him for his 7 August response to the SWC appeal for ending Palestinian abuse of football as a weapon of war."

"For over three years of a campaign, based upon Palestinian Media Watch (PMW) research, the Centre had constantly urged FIFA to quash Palestinian desecration of the ‘Beautiful game’."

The FIFA letter stressed that "FIFA expect its Confederation Member Associations to comply with the principles of neutrality in matters of politics and religion and to avoid any form of political interference. Please rest assured that FIFA upholds these values and on the basis of the FIFA Statutes… (Art.5 of the FIFA Statutes)."

"Our campaign will end only when FIFA expels the Palestinian Football Association (PFA) for glorifying terrorism in naming its stadiums, clubs and tournaments to iconize murderers," concluded Samuels.

Strasbourg, 23 October 2017

The 47 member-states Council of Europe is hosting the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s exhibition, “People, Book, Land: the 3,500 Year Relationship of the Jewish People with the Holy Land.”

The inauguration was attended by the Ambassadors of the 42 States co-sponsors of the exhibition: Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bosnia Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, the Republic of Macedonia, Malta, the Republic of Moldova, Monaco, the Republic of Montenegro, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Russia, San Marino, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine and the United Kingdom.

- Our "Worst Offender 2017 Award" Goes to Iran for obsessive anti-American Incitement.

- "Runner-Up" Goes to Egypt for displaying the latest antisemitic conspiracy theory screed.

Frankfurt, 18 October 2017

For the 15th year, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre is the only non-governmental organisation to monitor hate and violence on the display stands of the Frankfurt Book Fair (FBF).

"With over 7,300 exhibitors from 150 countries and more than 300,000 visitors, this is the largest annual international gathering of the publishing industry", claimed Jurgen Boos, FBF Director. It is referred to as "The Olympics of Book Fairs".

"We monitor some 300 stands... This year was most encouraging in the diminution of hate material on display. This may be due to our prior monitoring and exposing the huge presence of antisemitic titles at Arab book fairs. We then denounce the delinquent publishers to the Frankfurt authorities as likely to violate their contractual obbligations to the Fair which prohibit incitement to hate and violence," explained Shimon Samuels, the Centre's Director for International Relations.

"Nevertheless the Fair is not hate-free... this is our report," he added.