WASHINGTON (May. 5)
Leona Chanin, the outgoing president of the American Jewish Congress’ National Women’s Division, warned here that the World Conference of the United Nations Decode for Women in Copenhagen this July will result in “virulent anti-Israel declarations, sabotaging progress in meeting women’s needs.”
Mrs. Chanin told 300 delegates to the Division’s national convention that the preparatory committee of the Copenhagen Conference has accepted a demand by the Palestine Liberation Organization to include a document prepared last December in Damascus by the UN Economic Commission for Western Asia. She called that body-“anti-Israel, controlled by the Arab states” and said it accepted the PLO as a member but refused to accept Israel.
“The urgent and important work that must be done to protect and ensure the rights of women is being sabotaged by the PLO demand to politicize the women’s conference,” Mrs. Chanin said. She added:
“The deliberations at Copenhagen should concentrate on practical, action-oriented programs relevant to women, emphasizing health, education and employment. Instead, we will be treated to another anti-Israel spectacle by the terrorist PLO and its supporters, jeopardizing progress on genuine women’s concerns.”
Mrs. Chanin predicted that the Copenhagen meeting would give rise to “anti-Zionist declarations for worse than those adapted at the opening conference of the Decode for Women in Mexico City in 1975.” At that meeting, which launched the Decode for Women, delegates passed a resolution equating Zionism with apartheid. Later that year, the UN General Assembly adapted a resolution declaring Zionism to be a form of racism. Mrs. Chanin was succeeded as president by two co-presidents, Chiae Herzig of Baltimore, and Marian Willen of Philadelphia.