J Street statement on Durban 2

February 19, 2009

J Street Executive Director Jeremy Ben-Ami released the following decision:

J Street supports President Barack Obama’s decision to participate in a preparatory meeting for this April’s “Durban 2” UN-sponsored World Conference Against Racism in Geneva.  U.S. participation in the planning is critical to ensuring that the conference successfully maintains its focus on rallying international efforts to combat intolerance, discrimination, and other fundamental  violations of human rights worldwide.

We further hope that, by participating in the planning, the United States can influence the agenda and preclude a repeat of the anti-Semitism and compulsive Israel-bashing that characterized the first conference in 2001.  Intolerance as such not only undermines the conference’s stated mission, but also inhibits international efforts to reinvigorate the process of reconciliation and bring true peace and security to the Middle East through a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.