RIO DE JANEIRO (JTA) — Mexico’s former UNESCO ambassador, who was fired last year for walking out of a vote on an anti-Israel resolution effectively denying Jewish ties to Jerusalem, was honored in Los Angeles.
Andres Roemer received the Guardian of Truth and History Award from StandWithUs during a ceremony held Friday in Los Angeles, reported the Milenio news website.
“More important than education is critical thinking. Many people with many academic degrees and educational degrees have voted, supported and made terrible leaders rise to power. It does not matter if they are right or left. It does not matter if they are Trump, Chavez, Maduro or Pol Pot. The followers end up being the leaders,” Roemer, who is Jewish, said during his speech.
In October 2016, the Latin American diplomat risked his position by walking out of a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization vote at its headquarters in Paris — leaving his deputy to cast the country’s vote — in a personal protest against the UNESCO resolution denying Jewish ties to Jerusalem.
StandWithUs was founded in 2001 and currently has a global presence with 16 offices in the United States, Israel and the United Kingdom. Its main activity is to train Israeli speakers and collaborators with a wide variety of materials, resources and tools in order to effectively combat the growing anti-Israel campaigns.
In July, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Roemer in Jerusalem.
“Last year, I received many expressions of sympathy and support from the Jewish and also the Christian world, but today’s meeting was particularly touching for me,” Roemer said then. according to a statement by Israel’s ambassador to UNESCO, Carmel Shama-Hacohen, who organized the meeting.
In May, the Mexican-Jewish diplomat received the International Sephardic Leadership Award from the American Sephardic Federation.