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Israeli Woman Leader Says She Scored Success at Vancouver Convention

The head of the Council of Women’s Organizations in Israel, Mrs. Pnina Herzog, scored a remarkable success in an international forum recently, when she was voted chairman of the health committee of the International Council of Women at its convention in Vancouver, Canada. Mrs. Herzog received 80 votes while a Belgian candidate for the honorary post received 30.

Delegates from 68 countries attended the convention, Mrs. Herzog told the JTA in an interview. There were no Arab delegations present, she said, and everyone made strenuous efforts to keep politics out of the deliberations.

She recounted one particular achievement during the debate: at the Asia and Oceania caucus, of which Israel is a member, the Iranian delegate proposed that that caucus recommend to the plenary that it adopt a resolution endorsing the “Declaration of Mexico” on women’s rights. This declaration included a restatement of the UN General Assembly resolution equating Zionism with racism. The Australian delegate at Vancouver demanded — as a holding action — that copies of the Mexico text be circulated before the vote be taken on whether to endorse it.

Mrs. Herzog asked for the floor to propose that instead of endorsing the Mexico declaration, the plenary should be asked to endorse instead the “World Plan of Action”– which was the original draft of the declaration of Mexico without the offensive anti-Zionism reference. This was carried without opposition by the Asia and Oceania caucus and later by the full plenary.

Mrs. Herzog, widow of the late top Israeli diplomat, Yaacov Herzog, also presented motions on social issues which were well received. She told the JTA the next meeting of the Asia and Oceania caucus would probably be held in Israel during 1978, her invitation having been well received by fellow caucus delegates.

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