“UN Human Rights experts express profound concern over a recent statement by the US Attorney-General describing [Antifa] and other anti-fascist activists as domestic terrorists, saying it undermines the rights to freedom of expression and of peaceful assembly in the country,” the UN Geneva office, home to the Human Rights Council, tweeted on Friday, accompanied by a photo of the Antifa banner.
UN #HumanRights experts express profound concern over a recent statement by the US Attorney-General describing #Antifa and other anti-fascist activists as domestic terrorists, saying it undermines the rights to freedom of expression and of peaceful assembly in the country. pic.twitter.com/2Pz2dMyq8k
— UN Geneva (@UNGeneva) June 19, 2020
No further information was given about who these experts might be, or whether this was the official position of the Human Rights Council, a body the US demonstratively left in June 2018, citing its criticism of Israel.
The unusual tweet quickly attracted controversy over the UN’s apparent endorsement of Antifa, whose masked activists have repeatedly clashed with conservatives and police on US streets over the past several years, including during the recent protests and riots.
“The United Nations is running cover for an international extremist group that has conducted violent insurrectionist attacks across North America and Europe,”tweeted journalist Jack Posobiec of OAN, adding“Antifa doesn’t exist and also the UN just endorsed them.”
Journalist Drew Holden brought up the Geneva office’s praise for China, adding that rather than defunding police, the US should “defund the UN.”
— Drew Holden (@DrewHolden360) June 19, 2020
The UN Geneva tweet came after the UN Human Rights Commission asked for a report on “systemic racism” and police abuses against people of African descent, in a resolution that did not dare mention the US by name.
This displeased activists at the American Civil Liberties Union, who declared that the UN “needs to do its job – not get bullied out of doing it – and hold the United States accountable.”
“The country must face independent global scrutiny for its oppression of Black people,” said Jamil Dakwar, director of the ACLU’s Human Rights Program.
Meanwhile, the European Union Parliament adopted a ‘Black Lives Matter’ resolution demanding that the US “take decisive steps to address the structural racism and inequalities in the country, as reflected in police brutality.”