GENEVA (AA) – The international community must take firm action to protect the human rights and dignity of Palestinians, a UN expert has said.
Francesca Albanese, the UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, highlighted the urgency of action saying that this happens to be “at a moment of increased violence in the occupied Palestinian territory, with the new Israeli government threatening even further annexation.”
“The wave of deadly violence sweeping through the occupied West Bank since the beginning of this year is the inexorable consequence of an acquisitive and repressive occupation with no end in sight and the culture of lawlessness and impunity Israel has nurtured and enjoyed,” Francesca Albanese said in a press release.
Recalling the attacks in the last three months in Jenin refugee camp, Nablus and Jericho, which killed 80 Palestinians and wounded 2,000, Albanese said: “Every loss of life, whether Palestinian or Israeli, is a tragic reminder of the price people pay for not addressing pervasive injustice and its root causes.”
During the same period, 13 Israelis were killed by Palestinians, the special rapporteur noted.
“Israel, emboldened by a lack of meaningful intervention, has consolidated its acquisitive and repressive occupation, with Member States offering little more than symbolic condemnation, humanitarians providing band-aid aid, and legal scholars entangled in theoretical debates,” she said.
She urged the UN to move beyond simply counting casualties and calling for restraint.
“The organization cannot indulge in the condescending acceptance of an irresolvable ‘conflict,’ and in urging the ‘parties’ to ‘de-escalate tensions’ and ‘resume negotiations,'” she said. “In reality, there are no equal parties nor a proper ‘conflict,’ but rather an oppressive regime that threatens the right of an entire people to exist.”
The special rapporteur underlined that there is a reality that the international community “must stop and reverse” immediately and described it as: “Tolerating annexation would legitimize aggression, bringing international law back almost a century.”
The peoples of the UN “must not remain silent in the face of egregious violations,” she said and urged the international community to recommit to the ideals of the UN Charter “in the interest of both Palestinians and Israelis.”