ADL joins call urging Ban not to go to Tehran

WASHINGTON (JTA) — The Anti-Defamation League joined calls urging United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon not to participate in a non-aligned nations conference in Iran.

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“At a time when responsible members of the international community are working together to pressure Iran to give up its nuclear weapons program by increasing its isolation, we would expect the Secretary General to express support for that effort by announcing he will not be traveling to Tehran,” said a statement issued Tuesday by the ADL. “His apparent hesitation to make such an announcement is inexplicable.”

Iran is set to host the next Non-Aligned Movement triennial summit on Aug. 30-31.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu last week called Ban and urged him not to attend. Other groups, including the American Jewish Committee and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, also have called on Ban and other non-aligned nations not to attend.

The Non-Aligned Movement, launched in 1961, was conceived as an umbrella for nations opting out of the Cold War between the United States and the former Soviet Union, although many of its member nations ultimately sided with the USSR.

Since the collapse of the Soviet Union in the early 1990s, the movement has struggled to define itself. 

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