The Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies (CIHRS) addressed the ongoing violations and the deteriorating human rights conditions in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) in an intervention before the 19th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
CIHRS criticized the UN’s inability to perform its role by putting an end to persistent violations in the OPTs, especially in light of the current escalation of violence in Gaza. Recently, the Extra-Judiciary killings increased to include the killing of Zuhair Al-Qaisi and Mahmoud Al-Hannani of the Popular Resistance Committees, sparking another flare-up in Gaza leaving 23 Palestinians dead and wounding 73 others in addition to 4 Israelis. The recent disproportional bombardment of Gaza by the Israelis on civilian areas could yet again constitute a war crime.
CIHRS further denounced the illegal expansions of Israeli settlements which continue unchecked. Settlement construction has accelerated, with plans for 3,700 new units approved in East Jerusalem alone. Also this year a record number of Palestinians have been displaced by demolitions of their homes, water sources, and agricultural structures. CIHRS described this development as not only constituting a serious obstacle to peace, but has also made a two-state solution almost impossible to achieve.
CIHRS concluded its intervention by taking note of the UN’s failure to come up with concrete follow-up measures to the Goldstone findings and Flotilla report. CIHRS stated that this in addition to the lack of a political will to ensure investigating and prosecuting decades of war crimes and crimes against humanity and conditions resembling apartheid are the reasons behind the continuation of human rights violations against Palestinians.
To watch the intervention:
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