30 December 2013 – Jordan Valley and Settlement Announcements

Excellency,

We bring to your urgent attention these consequential illegal actions by Israel, the occupying Power, which require the international community, particularly the Security Council, to speak with one voice in condemning and take the necessary actions to end these grave breaches of the law which threaten the achievement of peace through the two-State solution on the basis of the 1967 borders. If continued unabated these plans will make permanent an Apartheid regime consisting of one State with two segregated legal systems further threatening international peace and security.

On 29 December, Israel’s Ministerial Committee for Legislative Affairs approved a bill that would extend its laws to the settlements and their by-pass roads in the Jordan Valley, effectively annexing 28.5% of the occupied West Bank, denying the State of Palestine its sovereignty, territorial contiguity, and viability.

The Security Council must resend the same message to Israel, occupying Power, as it did in its resolution 478 of 20 August 1980 with regards to is “basic law” on Jerusalem which, inter alia, affirmed “that the enactment of the ‘basic law’ by Israel constitutes a violation of international law and does not affect the continued application of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War, of 12 August 1949, in the Palestinian and other Arab territories occupied since June 1967, including Jerusalem” and  that “all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, the occupying Power, in particular the ‘basic law’ on Jerusalem,…are null and void and must be rescinded forthwith.” The international community, particularly the Security Council, must reiterate the same concerning the rest of the State of Palestine, particularly the Jordan Valley, and call upon all States to ban all settlement products from entering their markets and cut all possible ties with the Israeli occupation, including to non-governmental organizations and private sector entities supporting it.

In continuum of Israel’s illegal actions to derail the efforts of the international community, particularly the current efforts of the United States and others to achieve comprehensive and lasting peace, Israel has announced its intention to construct an additional 1,400 settlement units throughout the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem.  These announcements highlight the arrogance and intransigence of the occupying Power, emphasizing the need for legal recourse, including through the International Criminal Court, for the State of Palestine to protect its citizens and territory from these most serious Israeli violations of the Rome Statute and the Fourth Geneva Convention.

This letter is in follow-up to our previous 480 letters regarding the ongoing crisis in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, which constitutes the territory of the State of Palestine.  These letters, dated from 29 September 2000 (A/55/432-S/2000/921) to 24 December 2013 (A/ES-10/610-S/2013/767) constitute a basic record of the crimes being committed by Israel, the occupying Power, against the Palestinian people since September 2000.  For all of these war crimes, acts of State terrorism and systematic human rights violations being committed against the Palestinian people, Israel, the occupying Power, must be held accountable and the perpetrators must be brought to justice.

I should be grateful if you would arrange to have the text of the present letter distributed as a document of the tenth emergency special session of the General Assembly, under agenda item 5, and of the Security Council.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurances of my highest consideration.

 

Dr. Riyad Mansour

Ambassador, Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the United Nations