The Israeli and Palestinian ambassadors engaged in a rare shouting match in the UN Security Council on Monday, reflecting Israel’s growing consternation at the upsurge in Palestinian attacks against civilians.
Israel’s Ambassador Danny Danon started the heated exchange during his speech during Monday’s monthly council meeting on the Middle East.
Looking across the council table at Palestinian envoy Riyad Mansour, he demanded: “Will you condemn Palestinians who commit terror attacks against Israelis?”
Mansour, whose initial response was not heard because his microphone was off, retorted when it was turned on: “We condemn the killing of all innocent civilians, including Palestinian civilians. Do you do the same?”
But when Danon pressed him to specifically condemn Palestinian attacks on Israelis, Mansour would not do so.
Danon had invited Natan and Ranana Meir, the husband and daughter of Dafna Meir Hy”d, who was murdered at the entrance to her home in Otniel, Yehudah, in January.
“Today, Natan and Ranana Meir sit here behind me, in the Council,” Danon said. “The culture of hate and Palestinian brainwashing is responsible for the murder of too many Israelis, and it is directly guilty in the murder of Dafna Meir.”
The Meirs also addressed the Council members directly, saying, “It is hard to express in words the great pain, the difficulty, the longing. It’s hard to express how much the absence tears the heart and the soul. With a painful and bleeding heart we come to ask the understanding of the international community.”
“We hear voices that say it (terror) comes from frustration, that there needs to be separation and condemnation, and we ask, is there any frustration greater than ours?”