Geneva— The ongoing violations perpetrated by the Israeli authorities against Palestinian civilians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip were the focus of the Euro-Mediterranean Human Rights Monitor and COJEP in their remarks to the 34th session of the Human Rights Council.
In a joint statement, the two organizations warned against the Israeli authorities’ approval of more than 2,500 new settlements in the West Bank, in a stark challenge to the UN Security Council’s 2016 resolution calling on the government to stop all colonization activities in the Palestinian territories.
In addition, the two organizations pointed to the systematic Israeli policy of collective punishment in Gaza. According to international law, Israel’s 12-year blockade of Gaza—which prevents most exports, many vital imports and controls all human traffic—is a war crime. As a result, 72 percent of the population are food-insecure and suffer from severe shortages of water, electricity and medications.
“We are deeply concerned about Israel’s decision to ignore the United Nations’ resolutions and other resolutions expressed by the international community related to the blockade and the continuous expansion of illegal settlements in the Palestinian territories,” Euro-Med Monitor and COJEP said in their statement.
The organizations called on the council and its member states to hold Israel accountable by imposing sanctions—thus ending the impunity Israel has long enjoyed.