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Israeli Parliament Votes to Approve Nation-State Law that Enshrines Jewish Supremacy over Palestinian Citizens

19 JUL
6:03 PM
New Basic Law, approved by a Knesset vote of 62-55, has distinct apartheid characteristics and requires racist acts as a constitutional value.

The Israeli Knesset voted 62 to 55 early today, Thursday, 19 July, 2018, to approve the Jewish Nation-State Basic Law that constitutionally enshrines the identity of the State of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people.

 

This law guarantees the ethnic-religious character of Israel as exclusively Jewish and entrenches the privileges enjoyed by Jewish citizens, while simultaneously anchoring discrimination against Palestinian citizens and legitimizing exclusion, racism, and systemic inequality.

 

The Jewish Nation-State Basic Law is the “law of laws” capable of overriding any ordinary legislation.

 

The law will apply to areas known as the “Green Line”, where nearly twenty percent of the population are Palestinian citizens of Israel, as well as to territories occupied in 1967 such as Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, which were annexed to the territory of the State of Israel by law. This annexation is considered illegal under international law.

 

Adalah General Director Hassan Jabareen responded to the Israeli parliament’s vote to approve the Nation-State Law:

 

“The Jewish Nation-State Law features key elements of apartheid, which is not only immoral but also absolutely prohibited under international law. The new law constitutionally enshrines the identity of Israel as the nation-state of the Jewish people only – despite the 1.5 million Palestinian citizens of the state and residents of East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights – and guarantees the exclusive ethnic-religious character of Israel as Jewish. By defining sovereignty and democratic self-rule as belonging solely to the Jewish people – wherever they live around the world –  Israel has made discrimination a constitutional value and has professed its commitment to favoring Jewish supremacy as the bedrock of its institutions.”

Related — 07/19/18 PM Hamdallah: Jewish Nation-State Law Legitimizes Apartheid

 

WHAT IS THE NATION-STATE LAW? [Click for more details]

 

The Nation-State Basic Law declares that Israel is a Jewish state – only. The law provides that, “The Land of Israel is the historical homeland of the Jewish people, in which the State of Israel was established” and that “the State of Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people”. The “people” here are not limited to “Israeli Jews” nor is it defined in terms of the “state of all citizens”, but rather it includes the “Jewish people” wherever they are in the world. Palestinian citizens of Israel, who compromise 20% of the population, are totally excluded.

 

The Nation-State Basic Law, which has constitutional status, is anti-democraticThe law negates the main purpose behind the introduction of a democratic constitution according to which residents living in a given territory are equal citizens and constitute the sovereign.

 

The Basic Law provides that self-determination will be exclusive to Jews. The law stands to justify the difference between the realization of basic rights between Jews and non-Jews as a legitimate distinction and not as an invalid discrimination.

 

The Nation-State Basic Law establishes discrimination as a constitutional value: It determines the national interest in accordance with the collective Zionist interests, which serve to justify the exclusion of the rights of the Arab population. Despite the bi-national reality, the law promotes exclusive, ethnic discrimination. National projects that seek to Judaize spaces, encourage Jewish settlement, and create demographic balances become worthy causes that justify discrimination against Arabs on the level of individual and collective rights.

 

Oppression and control are expressed in two main aspects of the law: First, the law imposes a constitutional identity on the Arabs without their consent. Second, the law creates a situation in which the Arabs participate, under coercion, in promoting the discrimination against them. While they bear equal tax obligations as citizens/residents, the Basic Law’s alignment of national interests with the exclusive interests of the Jewish population, results in forcing the Arab population to contribute, subsidize and promote those national projects that negate their identity and status.

 

What is new in the Basic Law that differs from existing practice? The policy of discrimination and oppression against Palestinians has existed since 1948, according to principles based on the supremacy of the Jewish population that support the Judaization of the space and the demographic dilution of the Palestinian population. However, there is a difference between racism and racist practices and this new Basic Law that requires, as a constitutional mandate, racist acts.

 

The Nation-State Law violates absolute prohibitions under international law: The Basic Law suspends the two systems of law that are perceived as legitimate under international law:. The first system is the state’s domestic legal system, which should be based on equality before the law and the rule of law. The second system is that of international humanitarian law (IHL), which is applicable to an occupied territory.

 

A colonial regime is expressed in this Basic Law by the imposition of a constitutional identity of Jewish ethnic supremacy and control, without consent and cooperation, which denies the connection between the Palestinian natives (citizens and residents) with their homeland. This colonial regime is the kind that falls within the bounds of absolute prohibitions under the International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid (“the Apartheid Convention”), which proclaims practices of apartheid, including legislation, as a crime against humanity.

 

The Nation-State Basic Law is illegitimate. It seeks to maintain a regime in which one ethnic-national group controls an indigenous-national group living in the same territory while advancing ethnic superiority by promoting racist policies in the most basic aspects of life.

CLICK HERE to read Adalah’s position paper on the Nation-State Law

(Source / 19.07.2018)

Israeli Army Kills One Palestinian, Injures Three, In Rafah

19 JUL
5:04 PM

An Israeli military drone fired, on Thursday afternoon, a missile at Palestinians east of Rafah, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, killing one, and wounding three others, including one who suffered serious injuries.

The Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza said the Palestinian, identified as Abdul-Karim Radwan, 22, died from his serious wounds in a hospital in Rafah, despite all efforts to save his life.

It added that three other Palestinians were injured by the Israeli missile, including one who suffered serious wounds, and is currently on life support.

Media sources in Gaza said the slain Palestinian is an officer with the Field Control Department of the Palestinian Interior Ministry.

Furthermore, three armored Israeli military bulldozers advanced approximately 50 meters into Palestinian lands in southern Gaza, and placed sand hills.

Commenting on the casualties in Gaza, the Israeli army claimed it targeted “Palestinians flying flammable balloons near a post run by the armed wing of Hamas in Rafah,” and added that Palestinian fighters “fired mortar shells at soldiers operating near southern Gaza.”

The army also said it will continue its operations “against Hamas with great severity.”

Just a few hours before the army killed Abdul-Karim, the Health Ministry published detailed statistics on the Palestinian casualties by Israeli army fire, since the beginning of the Great Return March on March 30th, 2018. The data covers the period between March 30thand July 17th.

  • 142 Palestinians killed, and 16496 injured.
  • 7901 of the wounded were treated in field trauma stabilization units.
  • 8695 of the wounded were transferred to several hospitals.
  • 17 of the slain Palestinians are children.
  • 2 of the slain Palestinians are medics.
  • 2 of the slain Palestinians are women.
  • 3126 of the wounded Palestinians are children.
  • 1362 of the wounded Palestinians are women.
  • 325 of the wounded Palestinians are medics.

Type of injuries:

  • 391 Palestinians suffered serious injuries.
  • 3992 Palestinians suffered moderate injuries.
  • 12113 Palestinians suffered mild injuries.

Cause of injuries:

  • 4190 Palestinians were shot with live ammunition.
  • 529 Palestinians were shot rubber-coated steel bullets.
  • 7421 Palestinians suffered the effects of teargas inhalation.
  • 4356 Palestinians suffered cuts, bruises and fractures.

Location Of injury In The Body:

  • 613 in the head and neck.
  • 361 in the chest and back.
  • 392 in the abdomen and pelvis.
  • 1239 in the upper limbs.
  • 5383 in the lower limbs.
  • 1087 Other.

Amputations:

  • 60 lower limbs.
  • 1 upper limbs.
  • 7 handed and fingers.

Israeli army fire also caused damage to 58 Palestinian ambulances in several parts of the Gaza Strip.

(Source / 19.07.2018)

Palestinians given just 0.25% of Israeli-allocated state land in occupied West Bank

Israeli settlements are under construction on Palestinian land in Jerusalem on December 29 2016 [Daniel Bar On/Anadolu Agency]

Israeli settlements are under construction on Palestinian land

Palestinians have been given just 0.25 percent of Israeli-allocated state land in the occupied West Bank, new figures have revealed.

As reported by Haaretz, data released by the Defense Ministry-run Civil Administration shows that since 1967, occupation authorities have allocated only 1,624, dunams (401 acres) of so-called state land in the West Bank for Palestinians.

“A conservative estimate puts this at around 0.25 percent of the allocations in the West Bank”, Haaretz states, adding that “all other allocations have been for [Israeli] settlements”.

The figures were made public after a request by Peace Now and the Movement for Freedom of Information after a two-year delay.

Read: The Palestinian cause is about land not economics

“For more than 50 years the state has allocated land in the West Bank almost solely for the needs of settlements, and sweepingly fails to designate it for the use of the protected Palestinians,” said Shabtay Bendet of Peace Now’s settlement-monitoring team.

Under international law, the Palestinians under Israeli military occupation are a protected population.

#LandGrab

Since 1967, Israeli authorities declared huge swathes of the occupied Palestinian territory as ‘state land’, in order to facilitate colonisation.

“Land is one of the most important public resources, and designating it for the use of one group only at the expense of another is one of the clearest characteristics of apartheid”, Bendet continued.

According to the full data obtained by Peace Now, 99.76 percent of state land in the occupied West Bank has been “allocated for the needs of Israeli settlements”.

(Source / 19.07.2018)

Major damage to arts centre and children’s facilities from latest Israeli airstrike on Gaza

Israeli forces hit an arts centre in Gaza City, Gaza on 16 July, 2018 [Twitter]

Israeli forces carried out air strikes and targeted an arts centre in Gaza City, Gaza on 16 July, 2018

The Israeli airstrikes on the occupied Gaza Strip over last weekend caused significant damage to a well-known cultural centre and an educational facility for children.

According to The National, Gaza’s Arts and Crafts Village was “severely damaged” when one Israeli strike “hit an unfinished building right next to the village”.

Jomma Alzaem, who owns an antiques brass shop in the Village, told The National: “I believe that Israel wanted to target the village, not the building. They targeted Palestinian heritage, a heritage that they don’t own”.

“I spent years collecting the brass. I had items about 100 years old. My shop was considered as a tourist attraction, and now all of the brass and relics are under rubble”.

Nihad Shaqlih, director of the village, said it was completely damaged by the Israeli strikes.

Read: ‘The occupation is acting without deterrence in Gaza,’ says head of Gaza committee

“The village contains archaeological items and brass hundreds of years old but all of it is under rubble. It is an attempt by the Israeli occupation to destroy and erase our heritage, but we will rebuild the village again to protect Palestinian history”, she said.

The National added: “Now paintings and historical objects lie scattered on the ground, along with shards of pottery. Some shops are partly destroyed – the ceilings collapsed, walls cracked. Inside the building, broken glass crunches beneath the weight of people’s footsteps”.

Meanwhile, a partner organisation of US NGO Humanity & Inclusion (HI), also saw “their work severely disrupted as a result of damage caused by the indirect impact of airstrikes close-by”.

Read: Israel closes sole commercial crossing with Gaza

According to HI, the premises – in a building “adapted to welcome children with disabilities” – provides “education and play facilities for children”, and “sustained indirect but widespread damage as a result of nearby airstrikes”.

HI noted that “many rooms are now unsafe and unusable and several disability-friendly facilities have been destroyed”.

(Source / 19.07.2018)

Israel wants to kill Palestinians silently

Women in Gaza take part in the 'Palestinian Women for the Return and Breaking the Siege' protest on 3 July 2018 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Palestinians carry an injured protester after Israeli forces fired tear gas at protesters during the Great March of Return on 3 July 2018

Motasem A Dalloul
By Motasem A Dalloul

Early this week the Israeli Knesset approved the first reading of what is known the Facebook Billwhich stipulates that Israeli authorities are entitled to request internet giants like Facebook, Google and others to delete content under the pretext of inciting terror.

Then on Tuesday the Israeli Knesset passed a law that will ban rights groups which disclose crimes committed by Israeli soldiers against the Palestinians from entering Israeli schools and speaking with pupils.

Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennet, who initiated this law, said that it is targeting the people who are working to delegitimise the state of Israel: “The reality in which organisations that undermine the legitimacy of the State of Israel and slander IDF soldiers will get to school children has ended today,” he told Israeli media.

He referred to the Israeli NGO Breaking the Silence, which interviews former Israeli soldiers who committed violations and acted brutally against the Palestinians when they were serving in the occupied Palestinian territories.

Israeli minister: Israeli jets should drop bombs over the heads of Gaza children

“Breaking the Silence crossed the line a long time ago of legitimate dialogue when they chose to slander the State of Israel in the international arena,” Bennet said.

Israeli MK David Bitan has said that he “examined whether, legally speaking, if I can ask the interior minister to revoke the citizenship of B’Tselem’s executive director. I checked, and there’s no legal avenue for doing so today, but we must strip his citizenship.”

Bitan’s remarks came after the director of the Israeli rights group addressed the UN Security Council and spoke about Israel’s violation of international law and disclosed Israeli army crimes before international leaders.

In a letter to B’Tselem, Director General of the Israeli National-Civilian Service Authority accused B’Tselem of spreading lies, claiming that it carried out “activities against the State of Israel and IDF soldiers in Israel and around the world”.

 What to do in the face of the Israeli escalation in Gaza

All these efforts are aimed at preventing the dissemination of information about daily Israeli violations against the Palestinians. Israel calls Palestinians and pro-Palestine activists who post Israeli crimes on social media hate inciters. Therefore, it is working on the Facebook Bill to continue its brutalities.

Representatives of Breaking the Silence, according to Israeli lawmakers, must not mix with Israeli students at schools in case they give them distorted information about the crimes of the Israeli army.

#GazaCrisis

B’Tselem, the leading Israeli rights group, is accused of telling lies because it spoke to international leaders about the crimes of the Israeli army practiced against the Palestinians.

“There is a clear line between legitimate political opinions in Israel and disseminating and publishing lies and slander, which cause severe damage to Israel and IDF soldiers,” National-Civilian Service Authority Director General Sar-Shalom Djerbi wrote in his letter.

 Remembering the 2014 Israeli offensive against Gaza

Israel will only be happy when there is no one to speak about Israeli crimes and the brutal killing of Palestinians. Even when the UN Human Rights Council speaks about its crimes Israel accuses it of being anti-Semitic.

Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Liberman commented on a resolution by the UNHRC taken against Israel: “Israel has no business being in the UN’s Human Rights Council”. He said its “presence there gives legitimacy to… anti-Semitic resolutions, and the farce must end”.

So, you have to remain silent about Israel’s crimes or you are accused of telling lies and being anti-Semitic and then the Israeli parliament constitutes laws against you.

(Source / 19.07.2018)

Thousands gather in Khan al Ahmar against planned demolition

Khan al Ahmar thousands

Thousands of protesters on Wednesday held a protest against the Israeli plan to demolish Khan Al-Ahmar Bedouin village and replace it with illegal Israeli Settlement units, by waving Palestinian flags and chanting slogans.

Protesters included Palestinian citizens who came from cities all over the West Bank, in addition to Palestinian leaders and public figures who addressed the crowd.

Head of the Wall and Settlements Resistance Authority, Walid Assaf spoke to the residents of Khan al-Ahmar, ensuring them that the protesters who arrived for solidarity will not stop supporting the village until the demolition plans have ended.

“The issue of Khan al-Ahmar is not an issue of several hundred people,” Assaf said. “Rather it is an issue of the entire Palestinian people.”

Speaking at the rally, Fatah deputy chairman Mahmoud Aloul praised the steadfastness and perseverance of the residents of Khan al-Ahmar in spite of all the Israeli measures to force them out of their land.

Khan al-Ahmar is a predominately Bedouin village made of members from the Jahalin tribe, according to B’Tselem. The Jahalin were displaced twice, once from the Negev desert of Israel proper and again from the area where the illegal Israeli settlement “Kfar Adumim” occupies, before finally arriving in Khan al-Ahmar.

The area planned for demolition in Khan al-Ahmar is approximately 2 kilometers south of Kfar Adumim, where Israel’s Supreme court has approved the construction of hundreds of units, according to International Middle East Media Center.

The plans to demolish the village comes after years of attempts to coerce the residents to leave their homes. Head of Khan al-Ahmar village council Eid Abu Dahouk said that Israel has made efforts to coerce the residents from their land for years. This coercion comes through military orders, economic strangulation and attacks from Jewish settlers.

The Israeli High Court granted permission to the Israeli Minister of Defense for the demolition of the Khan al-Ahmar village in May of this year. The Court cited building without the necessary permits as grounds for demolition.

Al Jazeera reported that between 2000 and 2007, only six percent of permits were granted in Area C of Palestine’s West Bank, making legitimate construction near Khan al-Ahmar nearly impossible.

Israel’s E1 plan, which is attempting to connect the enormous Ma’aleh Adumim Israeli settlement with East Jerusalem, puts the Bedouin villages in the area most at risk of demolition and forced expulsion.

But as a result of the local and international response to the planned demolition, the Israeli plans for Khan al-Ahmar have been halted until Aug. 1, despite the same court granting permission to demolish the village months before.

(Source / 19.07.2018)

Israel holds over 2000 truckloads to Gaza

Holding truckloads

Israeli occupation is holding more than 2000 truckloads of goods for the industrial and commercial sectors of Gaza as part of its plan to strangulate Gaza and tighten the siege in an unprecedented manner since 2008.

Head of the Popular Committee Against Siege, MP Jamal al-Khudari on Wednesday said in a press statement that the occupation prevents the trucks from entering Gaza through the Kerem Shalom crossing, the only commercial crossing to G aza, which it recently decided to close.

Al Khudari pointed out that these trucks carry basic goods for the continuation of industrial and commercial life, including building materials of all kinds, “clothing, stationery, textiles, footwear, electrical tools, elevators, cars and raw materials for industry in all sectors of construction, metal, furniture and other industries.”

He stressed that the impact of holding these products leads to a rapid collapse of the industrial and commercial sector, and the collapse of all services as a result.

Al-Khudari added that these measures would gradually raise poverty and unemployment rates (highest in the world in Gaza), in addition to the fear that it would be difficult to fix all this potential collapse of the economy if the Gaza strangulation plan applied by the Israeli occupation continues.

In the same context, al-Khudari said that these goods were imported and purchased legally and have all approvals for passage, both ports and commercial crossings, but the occupation hinders it and returns after the arrival of the crossing, causing heavy losses, where they are stored for long periods, As a result of their lack of timely access to their owners.

Al-Khudari  called on the owners of these goods to appeal to Palestinian officials to move quickly and urgently to save them from this tragedy, as well as the European Union to exert pressure on the Israeli occupation, which is a flagrant violation of international law.

This comes as part of a collective punishment plan on Gaza for what it calls “burning balloons” being sent to the Gaza enclave settlements.

Israel also reduced the Gaza fishing zone from six to three nautical miles as part of its plan to strangle Gaza, which has been officially under blockade since 2006.

(Source / 19.07.2018)

Israeli Soldiers Abduct At Least Twenty-Seven Palestinians In The West Bank

18 JUL
8:30 PM

The Palestinian Prisoners’ Society (PPS) has reported that Israeli soldiers abducted, on Wednesday, at last twenty-seven Palestinians, in several parts of the occupied West Bank.

The soldiers violently invaded and searched dozens of homes, and interrogated many Palestinians while inspecting their ID cards, before abducting twenty-eight, including a female photojournalist, identified as Ra’eda Sa’id, who was taken prisoner from the courtyards of Al-Aqsa Mosque, in occupied Jerusalem.

The Palestinians in Israeli custody have been identified as:

1. Saed Abi al-Baja, Betunia – Ramallah.

2. Sami Abu Hussein (former political prisoner), Betunia – Ramallah.

3. Ibrahim Ahmad Tamimi, Dier Nitham – Ramallah.

4. Mouse Srouji, Tulkarem.

5. Odai al-Amour, Yatta – Hebron.

6. Mohammad al-Amour, Yatta –  Hebron.

7. Rami Najjar, Yatta – Hebron.

8. Mohammad Jibrin, Yatta – Hebron.

9. Ahmad Jibrin, Yatta – Hebron.

10. Omar Mohammad Barghouthi, Ramallah.

11. Nassim Hosni Barghouthi, Ramallah.

12. Ayyoub Rasmi Abu Alia, al-Mghayir – Ramallah.

13. Montasser Misbah Abu Alia, al-Mghayir – Ramallah.

14. Ahmad Tayyeb, Jenin refugee camp.

15. Tamer Ahmad Tayyeb, Jenin refuge camp.

16. Saber Ahmad Tayyeb, Jenin refugee camp.

17. Rauf Ahmad Tayyeb, Jenin refuge camp.

18. Wisam Abu Zeid, Jenin refugee camp.

19. Awni Kamil, Qabatia – Jenin.

20. Issam Saba’na, Qabatia – Jenin.

21. Abdul-Hakim Mousa, Marka – Jenin.

22. Moath Mousa, Marka – Jenin.

23. Fadi Hussein al-Atrash, Kafr Ra’ey – Jenin.

24. Borhan Mustafa al-Atrash, Kafr Ra’ey – Jenin.

25. Omar Mheisin, Shu’fat refugee camp – Jerusalem.

26. Mahmoud Sa’adi al-Adawein, Shu’fat refuge camp – Jerusalem.

27. Ra’eda Sa’id, Jerusalem.

(Source / 18.07.2018)

Israeli Military Issues Orders Illegally Confiscating Palestinian Lands Near Bethlehem

17 JUL
4:13 PM

Israeli soldiers invaded, Tuesday, Palestinian agricultural lands in the al-Khader town, south o the West Bank city of Bethlehem, and posted orders for the illegal confiscation of 120 Dunams.

Ahmad Salah, the coordinator of the Popular Committee against the Annexation Wall and Colonies in al-Khader, said the Palestinians found the military orders placed on their lands.

Salah added that the orders also instructed the Palestinians that they have 45 days to file appeals against the military orders.

The orders addressed each land owner by name, requiring them to evacuate from their lands, otherwise the military will take over by force.

Salah also aid that the Palestinians were given the option to file appeals within 30 days, with the “Absentee Property Office,” explaining “the reasons for the appeals, accompanied by maps and deeds, to claim ownership rights.”

The Palestinian can also file appeals with the special court in Ofer military base, near Ramallah, in central West Bank.

It is worth mentioning that such orders are rarely overturned by any Israeli court, and the lands are used by for the construction and expansion of illegal colonies in the occupied West Bank, and for military considerations, in direct violation of International Law, the Fourth Geneva Conventions and various international resolutions and treaties.

(Source / 18.07.2018)

‘The occupation is acting without deterrence in Gaza,’ says head of Gaza committee

Palestinian protestors clash with Israeli security forces during the 14th week of the Great March of Return at the Gaza-Israel border on 29 June 2018 [Mohammed Asad/Middle East Monitor]

Palestinian protestors clash with Israeli security forces during the 14th week of the Great March of Return at the Gaza-Israel border on 29 June 2018

Dr. Essam Yousef, head of the Popular International Committee to Support the Gaza Strip, has stated that the suffering of Gaza is “complex” and that the Israeli authorities are following a “lawless” policy in the Gaza Strip without being deterred by the international community which adopts laws and legislation that contradict the actions of the occupying state.

“The occupation is acting as if it reigns in the Gaza Strip, doing whatever it likes with Gaza’s land and inhabitants, including [enforcing the] siege, starving, and killing [people]. The occupation is trying to impose the will of the most powerful who seeks to subjugate the weak and control his fate in a way very much similar to the law of the jungle,” said Youssef during a press release.

“He who sees the practices of occupation in the Gaza Strip can hardly believe that this world is regulated by a system of laws and legislation that preserve human rights, and regulate the relationship of political entities among themselves in a way that guarantees the dignity and existence of everyone.”

“However, despite the existence of the aforementioned international laws, in addition to mechanisms that enable the enforcements of these laws, especially when it comes to providing protection to individuals or people under oppression, such mechanisms become useless when it comes to defending the Palestinian people’s cause and the Gaza Strip in particular.”

Read: Up to 80% of Gaza factories shut down

“The siege imposed by the Israeli occupation on Gaza is immoral and inhuman and has been ongoing for more than 11 years. The innocent people living in the Gaza Strip are paying the cost without any real and active reaction on the part of the international community to stop it and put an end to this human tragedy, “said Youssef.

Palestinians mourn during the funeral ceremony of Razan Ashraf Najjar, 21, a female paramedic who was shot dead by Israeli forces while healing wounded demonstrators during 'Great March of Return' protests in Khan Yunis on Friday, in Huzaa neighbourhood of Khan Yunis, Gaza on June 02, 2018 [Mustafa Hassona / Anadolu Agency]

Youssef pointed out that “the occupation is tightening the siege from time to time in order to further suffocate and starve the people living in the Strip, until it got to the point of closing all ports of entry, through which an insufficient amount of basic supplies can be provided, following the arbitrary decision to close the Kerem Shalom border crossing.”

He highlighted that data confirm banning the entry of hundreds of basic necessities into Gaza through the Kerem Shalom border crossing since its closure has been announced, thus resulting into a complete paralysis, and then a humanitarian disaster.

“Isn’t the occupation satisfied with what happened to the residents of the Gaza Strip since the beginning of the siege, and until now? Aren’t the hundreds of patients who died because of the occupation’s decision to prevent them from getting treatment as a result of the siege enough? Aren’t the rates of unemployment among young people in Gaza which reached about 49 per cent, in addition to poverty rates among the population which amounted to 53 per cent enough?,” Youssef asked.

Read: Gaza patients appeal to the world to save their lives

“Not to mention the percentage of the dependence of the people in Gaza on humanitarian aid, which is now more than 80 per cent of the population in addition to the lack of food security, which amounted to 72 per cent, as well as the lack of potable water and the proportion of consumption of non-potable water which has reached 95 per cent.”

“On top of all this, the occupation is waging repeated wars on the Gaza Strip, which took the lives of thousands of martyrs and wounded thousands of others, most of which were children, women and the elderly,” Youssef added.

He stressed that the occupation does not recognise the Palestinians’ right to express their rejection of this huge amount of oppression and tyranny. Meanwhile, it is using its weapons and sophisticated missiles against the innocent residents of the Strip in case they resist injustice.

He pointed out that all international laws and regulations, and our innate human nature, give the oppressed the right to resist injustice, defend itself, and fight for restoring its rights. The restoration of one’s rights can never be something granted by the occupation, which can give or take it whenever it wishes.

During his speech, Youssef called for intensifying diplomatic and political action at all levels, Palestinian, regional and international, in order to put an end to the siege tragedy on Gaza and stop human suffering in the Strip.

He stressed that security, stability, and peace can only be achieved through the recognition of the rights of the Palestinian people, foremost of which is the right to self-determination and the establishment of an independent state on its national soil with Jerusalem as its capital.

(Source / 18.07.2018)