World Jewish Congress, Israeli mission to host first international summit against BDS, at UN headquarters in New York

29 May 2016
29 May 2016 Facebook Twitter Email Print

NEW YORK - Israel's Mission to the United Nations and the World Jewish Congress (WJC) will co-host a special conference on the delegitimization of the State of Israel, at UN headquarters in New York, on 31 May 2016, in the presence of dozens of diplomats from around the world as well as thousands of students, dignitaries, public officials and opinion makers. The conference is geared particularly toward students and young professionals, to work together on combating diplomatic attacks against the State of Israel.

The World Jewish Congress will host the summary session of the conference, moderated by WJC CEO Robert Singer, and featuring a one-on-one conversation with SodaStream CEO Daniel Birnbaum, followed by a panel of experts on delegitimization in the public sphere: UK; Mosab Hassan Yousef, Author, “Son Of Hamas’; Bassam Eid, Founder, Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group; Professor Alan Johnson, Senior Research Fellow, BICOM, Emily Neilson – Winkler, Link Support & Development Ltd.

The session will focus on the delegitimization of Israel in the public sphere, with a focus on the economy and media, and will also concentrate on helping students and young leaders formulate the necessary tools to combat attacks against the right of the State of Israel to exist as a Jewish state.

WJC President Ronald S. Lauder said that he hoped that the conference, entitled "Ambassaors Against BDS," would help give the next generation the tools to fight anti-Israel and anti-Semitic sentiments. 
 
“The Jewish people must not let themselves be dragged into defeatism, or into victimhood. Our young people must be equipped with the tools to face adversity and to help the Jewish people remain strong and eternal,” Lauder added. “The Jewish people have the right to statehood and to remain a thriving member of the international community. We will not let our enemies defeat us.”

WJC CEO Singer said: “This unique conference is more than just a debate on the delegitimization of Israel or the boycott movement. This is not an issue of left or right, or of partisan politics. We are here to discuss the existential issue of the right of the Jewish people to exist in the State of Israel. There is no quick fix for this new form of anti-Semitism, and it is up to the next generation to glean the tools to combat these attacks, for the future of the State of Israel and the future of the Jewish people."

The conference will open with a plenary session in the General Assembly Hall, with address from dignitaries including Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon, World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder and Israeli Supreme Court Vice President Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, as well as a performance by the Jewish-American musician Matisyahu. Two panel discussions featuring acclaimed experts will follow in the afternoon, focused on the effects of the boycott movement in academia and the legal realm. The conference will conclude with the closing session hosted by the WJC.

Ambassador Danon said:  “BDS is continuing to spread and seeks to utilize international institutions to implement its ideology of hate,” he continued. “This summit will create practical tools to battle BDS by training students to serve as ‘ambassadors’ against boycotts.  They will return to their campuses fully equipped and ready to take on the lies of the BDS movement.”

The conference will be held in full coordination with Keren HaYesod, the American Center for Law and Justice, the Anti-Defamation League,  the Zionist Organization of America, Israel Bonds, StandWithUs, B'nai B'rith International, Hillel and CAMERA, among other organizations.

Schedule of events:
Tuesday, May 31, 2016 from 8:30 AM to 5:30 PM (EDT) 
United Nations Headquarters - New York, NY 10017

8:30 - Registration
10:00 - Main plenary session at the General Assembly Hall:

  • Moderated By Noa Tishby
  • H.E. Amb. Danny Danon, Israel's Permanent Representative to the UN
  • H.E. Amb. Ronald S. Lauder, President, World Jewish Congress 
  • Dr. Jay Sekulow, Chief Counsel, ACLJ
  • Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, Vice President, Supreme Court Of Israel

Special Performance by Matisyahu

12:00 - Lunch break

13:00 - Interactive expert workshops:

Click here to choose a workshop
1)      Fighting BDS on Campus (Conference room 4) - attend a one stop shop & learn best practices to confront BDS on your campus, from experts and student leaders from around the world.

  • Moderated By Mr David Suissa, Jewish Journal

One Stop Shop against BDS:

  • David Sable, Global CEO, Y&R
  • Frank Luntz, CEO, Luntz Global Partners

Main Speaker: Shoham Nicolet, CEO, IAC

Global Panel: Speaking From Experience

  • Moderated By Noa Fartuk, Tanger Hillel, Brooklyn College
  • Matias Wolff, WJC, Chile
  • Yosef Tarshish, Chairperson, WUJS, UK
  • Max Samarov, Senior Researcher, StandWithUs, USA
  • Benny Fisher, President, EUJS, Germany

2) Legal aspects of boycotts and de-legitimization (Conference room 3) - learn more about how to confront BDS from the legal perspective, use the law to your advantage, and meet Israel's Vice President of the Supreme Court of Israel, Justice Elyakim Rubinstein  

Speaker: Justice Elyakim Rubinstein, Vice President, Supreme Court Of Israel

Speaker: Jonathan A. Greenblatt, CEO, ADL

Panel: Legal Scholars against BDS

  • Moderated By Stuart Roth, Esq.,
  • Anne Herzberg, Esq., Legal Advisor, Ngo Monitor
  • Gabe Groisman, Esq., Councilman, Bal Harbour Village Council
  • Carly Gammill, Esq. Senior Litigation Counsel, ACLJ
  • Elizabeth (Liz) Berney, Esq. Staff Attorney, ZOA
  • Dr. Mark Goldfeder, Esq. Senior Lecturer, Emory Law School

14:45 - Summary Session:  Delegitimization of Israel in the public sphere (Sponsored by WJC)

  • Moderator: Mr. Robert Singer, CEO, World Jewish Congress
  • One-on-one With Daniel Birnbaum,  CEO, SodaStream

Panel Discussion:

  • Bassam Eid, Founder, Palestinian Human Rights Monitoring Group
  • Professor Alan Johnson, Senior Research Fellow, BICOM, UK
  • Mosab Hassan Yousef, Author, “Son Of Hamas’
  • Emily Neilson – Winkler, Link Support & Development Ltd


Registration can be completed at the following link: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ambassadors-against-bds-international-summit-at-the-un-tickets-24573239220. Journalists interested in covering the event should contact the media contacts below.

Media contacts

New York: Aliyana Traison
Tel.: +1 917 244 9660

Brussels: Michael Thaidigsmann 
Tel.: +32 495 510 917

Email: media@worldjewishcongress.org