A wealthy Jordanian businessman who traffics openly in antisemitic conspiracy theories has been appointed as a “special ambassador” by the United Nations agency dealing with international tourism.
The UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) announced this week that it had named Talal Abu Ghazaleh as Special Ambassador of Tourism and the Sustainable Development Goals in advance of its summit in Russia in 2019. Abu Ghazaleh, a Palestinian who was born in Jaffa in 1938, is the founder of The Talal Abu-Ghazaleh Organization, an accounting and consulting company deemed by Forbes magazine to be a market leader in the Arab world. A keen supporter of the UN, Abu Ghazaleh has been rewarded by recent UN Secretary-Generals – including Kofi Annan and Ban Ki Moon – with top positions on several UN Task Forces.
Despite his access to some of the world’s top diplomats, Abu Ghazaleh has never hidden his antisemitic views. Interviewed by the BBC‘s Arabic TV in January of this year, he spoke at length of his “plan” to “transfer” the Jewish population of Israel to other countries.
“Just like the Jews believe in the Right of Return, we Palestinians believe in the Right of Return,” Abu Ghazaleh said in comments translated by media monitoring organization MEMRI. “Let every Palestinian return to Palestine and every Jew return to his own country.”
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