Questions You Should be Asking the World Around You
From the United Nations Human Rights Council (OHCHR) this morning.
The Human Rights Council in its midday meeting held an interactive dialogue with the High Commissioner for Human Rights on her report on ensuring accountability and justice for all violations of international law in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.
Michelle Bachelet, High Commissioner for Human Rights, presenting her report (A/HRC/46/22), noted serious violations during the reporting period: 67 Palestinians, including 16 children, killed by Israeli security forces, and 3,678 injured. One Israeli soldier was killed by Palestinians during this period and 90 other Israelis were injured. Violations of international law included an attack by Israeli Security Forces which killed nine Palestinians, including five children, in Deir El Balah. Ms. Bachelet said Palestinian armed groups in Gaza continued to indiscriminately launch rockets and incendiary balloons towards Israel.
Israel, speaking as a concerned country, said that the report offered nowhere near a balanced view. Israel was entitled to accountability and justice for all violations of international law, yet Hamas was not even mentioned, although they used Palestinian children as human shields, controlled the Gaza Strip since Israel unilaterally disengaged from Gaza 15 years ago, and indiscriminately fired rockets targeting Israeli towns.
State of Palestine, speaking as a concerned country, said the report explored violations committed by the occupation forces from November 2019 to November 2020 in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The Gaza Strip continued to be subject to collective punishment through the blockade. The absence of justice for Palestinians signified the absence of justice everywhere, and the culture of impunity concerning Israel must end.
In concluding remarks, Nada Al-Nashif, Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, urged Israel to desist from demolishing homes, destroying private property and other acts. As for the comment on the lack of reference to rockets that Palestinians launched against Israel, there were in fact several paragraphs in the report addressing this.
In the discussion, some speakers condemned ongoing excessive use of force by the Israeli forces, and the lack of cooperation by Israel with the Office of the High Commissioner, calling the human rights situation in the occupied territories calamitous and horrific. Other speakers noted that Israel was a victim of terrorist aggression from various Palestinian groups and was within its rights to defend itself, something the report did not reflect in earnest.
Speaking in the interactive discussion were Pakistan on behalf of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation, European Union, Libya on behalf of the Group of African States, Qatar, Libya on behalf of the League of Arab States, Kuwait, Russian Federation, Jordan, Mauritania, Malaysia, Iraq, Indonesia, Senegal, Venezuela, Saudi Arabia, Iran, South Africa, Namibia, Egypt, China, Algeria, Tunisia, Lebanon, Syria, Luxembourg, Botswana, Sudan, Cuba, Turkey, Bangladesh, Ireland, Oman, Albania, Slovenia and Switzerland and Libya.
Also taking the floor were the following non-governmental organizations: Ingenieurs du Monde, Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights, Institute for NGO Research, Norwegian Refugee Council, Medical Aid for Palestinians, United Nations Watch, Al-Haq in a joint statement with the Law in the Service of Man, Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, Defence for Children International, and Women’s Centre for Legal Aid and Counselling.
https://www .ohchr .org/EN/HRBodies/HRC/Pages/NewsDetail.aspx?NewsID=26793&LangID=E
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