The United Nations wrapped up its first conference chaired by an Israeli.The Committee on Program and Coordination, which monitors the agenda and achievements of every agency of the United Nations, concluded its annual meeting Tuesday in New York. Ron Adam, the Israeli Foreign Ministry’s director for U.N. political affairs and a former official at Israel’s mission to the United Nations, served as the committee chair, the first time in history an Israeli has served in that capacity.”It’s a small step for the U.N., but it’s a big step for Israel in the U.N.,” Adam told JTA. “This is an important cornerstone with regard to the participation of Israel in the U.N.”Adam’s tenure as chairman represents the latest in a string of diplomatic achievements for Israel at the United Nations flowing directly from its admission in May 2000 into the Western European and Other States regional grouping. In 2005, Ambassador Dan Gillerman served as a vice president of the U.N. General Assembly, the first time an Israeli had done so since Abba Eban in 1952. Several foreign ministry officials have served as deputy chairs of U.N. committees in recent years.Adam said that several Muslim states had participated in the committee’s deliberations without incident, including Indonesia and Algeria. Iran’s representative attended the committee meetings but did not participate.
Israeli chairs UN conference