Archives for March 2018

6 March 2018 – Letter on Israeli Violations in OPT

Excellency,

In follow-up to my recent letter of 2 March 2018 regarding the violations and crimes by Israel, the occupying Power, in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, I am compelled to draw your attention to the continued rise of tensions as Israel’s right-wing government persists with its oppressive, provocative and illegal decisions and measures.

Illegal Israeli settlement activities in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, the blockade and the bombardment of the Gaza Strip, demolition and confiscation of Palestinian homes and properties, the arrest and detention of Palestinian civilians, including children, and violent military raids into Palestinian villages, towns, cities and refugee camps, causing death and injury to Palestinian civilians, continue unabated, causing further instability and deterioration of conditions on the ground.

The persistence of such actions starkly illustrate just how much Israel, the occupying Power, has been emboldened by recent developments and the ongoing lack of accountability. Before the eyes of the world, the Israeli government has abandoned all restraint and is doing everything in its power to bury the two-State solution and any chance for a just peace, in absolute contempt of the law and the resolutions of the United Nations Security Council and General Assembly. Moreover, it persists on this reckless and ruthless path in blatant disrespect of the will of the international community as articulated in those relevant resolutions and in the numerous statements made in recent and past debates at the United Nations and other international fora.

While impossible to record each and every crime committed by Israeli occupying forces and terrorist settlers against the Palestinian people, listed below are just a few of the countless Israeli crimes perpetrated in the period since our last letter on 12 February 2018, all reflecting policies aimed at dehumanizing and denying the rights of the Palestinian civilian population, traumatizing generation after generation under this illegal occupation. [Read more…]

2 March 2018 – Status of Churches in Occupied East Jerusalem

Excellency,

I write to draw your attention to the ongoing critical situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and, more specifically, to the continued repressive practices by Israel, the occupying Power, against Palestinian worshippers and holy sites in Occupied East Jerusalem, including one of the holiest churches in Christianity, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.

Recent developments highlight once again the urgency of efforts by the international community, particularly the Security Council, to collectively act to stem the dangerous deterioration to avert further instability; to ensure respect for the relevant United Nations resolutions, including with regard to the status of Occupied East Jerusalem as occupied territory, the applicability of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and the prohibition of all acts aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the City; and to ensure respect for the historic status quo at the holy sites.

In light of ongoing attempts by the occupying Power to change the status of the City and in contravention of the historic status quo, on Sunday, 25 February 2018, leaders from the Roman Catholic, Armenian and Greek Orthodox churches were compelled to announce the closing of the doors of their churches, including the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, in united protest against Israel’s discriminatory policies, which undoubtedly aim at weakening the Christian presence in Jerusalem. [Read more…]