UN Remains Silent on Hamas Rape & Gender Based Atrocities Committed Against Israeli Women
Edited by: Fern Sidman
Women’s rights groups and Israeli officials are expressing frustration over what they perceive as the United Nations’ silence on the documented cases of rape and gender-based atrocities committed by Hamas terrorists during the mass terror attack in Israel on October 7th, as was reported by Fox News. Despite sharing graphic and intimate evidence with the United Nations and women’s empowerment organizations, the response has been met with deafening silence.
Sarah Weiss Maudi, a senior diplomat and legal adviser in Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, criticized the lack of acknowledgment from U.N. bodies, particularly U.N. Women, which is mandated to champion women’s rights regardless of race or ethnicity, according to the Fox News report. The mass terror attack resulted in over 1,200 deaths and the kidnapping of 240 individuals, including women and young children. Fox News reported that she argued that some officials might perceive a bias from the “Jewish lobby” and prioritize a broader perspective of the conflict in Gaza over the specific cases of sexual violence against Israeli women.
She argued that some officials might perceive a bias from the “Jewish lobby” and prioritize a broader perspective of the conflict in Gaza over the specific cases of sexual violence against Israeli women.
“What I don’t understand is that we provided very graphic and descriptive evidence of rapes, including gang rapes and the remains of semen on young girls, it was not good enough for the U.N.,” said Weiss Maudi, as was reported by Fox News. “Yet data provided by the Hamas Ministry of Health is accepted and quoted without any verification at all,” she added.
Weiss Maudi also said that “some of them deny because they think Israelis fabricate lies. Others can only see these events in the context of the ‘occupation’ and they say ‘This is unfortunate but what did you expect was going to happen?’”
The Israel Police have collected approximately 60,000 videos, including footage from terrorists, victims, first responders, and CCTV, showcasing the gruesome crimes committed, Fox News reported. Disturbing eyewitness testimonies of gang rapes and other sexual acts have also been documented. However, the U.N. Women’s website makes no reference to the documented atrocities against Israeli women. Instead, it focuses on the “devastating impact of the crisis in Gaza on women and girls,” as was reported by Fox News.
Secretary-General Antonio Guterres faced calls for his resignation after stating at a U.N. Security Council meeting on October 24 that “attacks by Hamas did not happen in a vacuum,” according to the Fox News report. Many believe that Guterres’ comments implied blame on Israeli women, suggesting they deserved the atrocities due to perceived privilege.
Anne Bayefsky, director of Touro Institute on Human Rights and the Holocaust, accused U.N. Women of being a “phony human rights body” that disregards Jewish women and girls. The report on the Fox News web site noted that Bayefsky criticized the organization for blaming Israel for violence against Palestinian women while remaining silent on atrocities against Israeli women.
Bayefsky added that U.N. officials, including its special rapporteur for the Palestinian territories, Francesca Albanese, have not only ignored that rape and gender-based crimes took place against Jewish and Israeli women on Oct. 7, but have even actively questioned whether such acts took place, Fox News reported.
“U.N. Women have been blasting around blood libels, including demonic characterizations of Israelis, whom they allege are responsible for the war’s devastating impact on Palestinian women and girls, including pregnant Palestinians,” Bayefsky said, as was reported by Fox News. “Yet on the issue of a pregnant Israeli woman whose body was slashed open and her fetus stabbed to death, or the pregnant woman believed to have given birth in Hamas captivity, they are silent.”
Dr. Cochav Elkayam-Levy, chair of Israel’s newly formed Civil Commission on October 7th Crimes by Hamas Against Women, expressed surprise and a sense of betrayal over the international women’s organizations’ lack of response, as was reported by Fox News. She emphasized the ongoing struggle to garner recognition and condemnation of the documented atrocities, stating that gender-based violence encompasses more than just sexual violence.
The accusations against the UN and international organizations raise concerns about the impartiality and responsiveness of global bodies to gender-based atrocities in conflict zones, according to the Fox News report. The silence on the specific cases of violence against Israeli women contrasts sharply with the attention given to broader narratives in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), a branch of UN Women, is also facing criticism for its response to documented cases of rape and gender-based atrocities committed by Hamas terrorists during the Oct. 7 mass terror attack in Israel. Dr. Elkayam-Levy recounted her experience presenting evidence to CEDAW representatives.
During her testimony on October 30th, Elkayam-Levy described the brutal acts captured in video footage and images, emphasizing the gruesome nature of the crimes committed by Hamas terrorists against Israeli women and girls, Fox News reported. She highlighted the release of horrific visuals by Hamas as trophies of war and killings.
Elkayam-Levy expressed her dismay at the collective international denial she perceives, stating, “The evidence is undeniable. Yet, we find ourselves fighting a dual battle: one against these atrocities and another against global silence,” according to the Fox News report. She further argued that the refusal of international organizations to acknowledge these acts negatively influences women’s rights organizations worldwide, leading some to deny the occurrences.
The situation escalated when Elkayam-Levy provided an example from the University of Alberta in Canada, where the director of a sexual assault center signed an open letter disputing claims of rape and sexual assault by Hamas terrorists on Oct. 7, the report on Fox News said. In response, the University of Alberta announced that the director of the Sexual Assault Centre was no longer employed by the university.
In a statement to Fox News Digital, a spokesperson for UN Women condemned all forms of violence against women and girls, emphasizing that sexual violence as a weapon of war is a grave violation of human rights. The spokesperson mentioned UN Women’s commitment to upholding International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law.
UN Women stated that an independent commission of inquiry had already begun collecting and preserving evidence of war crimes committed by all sides since the Oct. 7 attack, the Fox News report said. The organization asserted its unequivocal condemnation of every act of violence against women and girls, irrespective of nationality, identity, race, or religion.