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UN To Place Israel On Blacklist Alongside ISIS, Al-Qaeda, Boko Haram

Above photo: Majdi Fathi/NurPhoto via Getty Images.

Israeli officials failed to lobby the UN against the move.

They describe it as ‘highly problematic’ as it could lead to countries imposing an arms embargo on Tel Aviv.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres is expected to include the Israeli army in the annual blacklist of countries and organizations harming children in conflict zones, according to reports in Israeli media.

Hebrew-language Channel 13 News reported late on 6 June that Guterres has informed Israeli army Defense Attaché in the US, Major General Hidai Zilberman, of his “final decision.”

Israel will reportedly appear on the blacklist to be published next week as part of a report distributed to UN Security Council members. A discussion on the report will take place on June 26.

According to Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth, Israel’s “efforts to persuade Guterres to avoid this move have failed.”

“The current secretary-general is anti-Israel and can no longer be influenced,” unnamed Israeli officials told the Israeli daily last month, expressing concerns that the move was imminent. “Including Israel on the blacklist is highly problematic and could lead to countries imposing an arms embargo on Israel,” the sources added.

Nonetheless, the UN is not expected to explicitly mention Israel or the Israeli army but rather “Israeli security forces.”

The annual report, authored by UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Children and Armed Conflict Virginia Gamba, will cover all of 2023, with a notable increase in incidents due to Israel’s campaign of genocide in Gaza.

Last year’s blacklist included Afghanistan, Colombia, Congo, Iraq, Mali, Myanmar, Somalia, Sudan, Yemen, and Syria, along with extremist armed groups Al-Qaeda, ISIS, Al-Shabaab, and Boko Haram.

The Russian army was also included in the blacklist last year for “attacking Ukrainian schools and hospitals and transferring children from Ukraine to Russia.”

Guterres excluded Israel from the list in 2023 despite recording grave violations against 1,139 Palestinian children, including 54 killings. Instead, he welcomed “Israel’s engagement” with Gamba and its “identification of practical measures, including those proposed by the UN” to protect children.

Since 7 October, more than 36,000 Palestinians, including approximately 15,500 children and 10,300 women, have been killed by the Israeli army in Gaza. The number of wounded during the genocidal war surpasses 80,000, predominantly children and women.

These numbers are not final, as thousands more remain trapped under rubble or on the streets, with rescue teams unable to reach them due to constant Israeli attacks.

“Gaza is becoming a graveyard for children. Hundreds of girls and boys are reportedly being killed or injured every day,” Guterres said last November. “More journalists have reportedly been killed over a four-week period than in any conflict in at least three decades.”

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