On December 15, 2008, the United Nation´s Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the Palestinian Territories, Richard Falk, was denied entry into Israel and returned to Geneva. According to Israel´s Foreign Ministry, Falk was “not invited, nor would be welcome in Israel” because of the “particularly biased and distorted” mandate of the Special Rapporteur and “the highly politicized views of the rapporteur himself, in legitimizing Hamas terrorism and drawing shameful comparisons to the Holocaust.”

A number of highly politicized international and local NGOs condemned Israel for this policy. Human Rights Watch´s Joe Stork, who has a long history of anti-Israel bias, stated, “With this ill-considered action, Israel put itself in the company of countries like Burma and North Korea in denying entry to UN human rights experts,” and B´Tselem executive director Jessica Montell called it “an act unbefitting of democracy.” Adalah (funded by the EU and NIF) sent “an urgent letter” to Israeli officials “demanding that they lift the ban,” and labeled the refusal “illegal.” Al-Mezan (on ReliefWeb), Defence for Children International/Palestine Section (press release), and Physicians for Human Rights – Israel (letter) also issued statements in protest.

See also “Double Standard Watch: Israel´s entry ban of Richard Falk,” Alan Dershowitz, Jerusalem Post Blog, December 21, 2008