9 July 2015 – One Year Since the Israeli War on Gaza

Excellency,

It is with deepest regret and sorrow that we recall the horror and devastation inflicted on the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip last year at this time by Israel, the occupying Power. One year has passed since the onset of Israel’s criminal war against Gaza, where the occupying forces killed and injured thousands of innocent Palestinian children, women and men; caused massive forced displacement; inflicted widespread and wanton destruction to homes, schools, hospitals and vital civilian infrastructure; and terrorized and traumatized the entire civilian population.

As witnessed by the world throughout July and August 2014, it was impossible in besieged Gaza to find safe refuge anywhere from this savage Israeli air, land and sea onslaught. Palestinian civilians were killed and injured in their homes, in hospitals, in playgrounds, on beaches, in UNRWA schools where they believed they were protected by the UN flag, and in the streets of their neighborhoods as they tried to escape the Israeli missiles, one-ton bombs and fire raining down upon them indiscriminately, shattering lives and families and reducing communities to rubble. [Read more…]

2 July 2015 – One Year Since Killing of Mohammed Abu Khdeir and Ongoing Israeli Violations

Excellency,

I regret to inform that the situation of the Palestinian people under Israeli occupation remains dire due to the repressive, destructive and colonial policies and practices that continue to be perpetrated by Israel, the occupying Power, in deliberate, systematic and grave violation of international humanitarian law and human rights law and with total impunity. Combined with the Israeli Government’s blatant rejection of peace and relentless provocations and incitement, this situation has deepened the pervasive sense of insecurity among the Palestinian people and the hopelessness regarding any possible redress of this appalling injustice. Moreover, it is inflaming tensions reminiscent of years past, including this time last year, when Israel launched a devastating military aggression against the Palestinian people, particularly in the Gaza Strip, from which they continue to suffer gravely and have yet to recover. [Read more…]

12 June 2015 – Israeli Violations in Recent Period

Excellency,

In follow-up to my letter, dated 9 June 2015, on the 48th year of Israel’s military occupation, I draw attention to the illegal policies and practices of the recent period, which continue to destabilize the situation and to inflict grave hardship on the Palestinian people.

In this regard, it should be noted that the illegal practices being highlighted in this letter reflect only a small sample of Israel’s violations throughout the Occupied State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem.  The fact is that no one has been spared the occupation’s subjugation, oppression and aggression as Palestine men, women, children, disabled, ill and elderly persons have all been victims of the grave and systematic violations of international law, including humanitarian and human rights law, perpetrated every single day by Israel, the occupying Power.

In the recent period, civilian casualties continued to be caused by the Israeli occupying forces against Palestinian civilians, including children and peaceful demonstrators.  On 10 June, the occupying forces killed a young man in Jenin in a violent military raid on the area.  Izz al-Din Bani Gharra, age 23, was shot in the back by Israeli soldiers as he came out of a mosque after prayers.  This was preceded by a dawn raid on 8 June, where undercover units invaded the Beit Jala Hospital in Bethlehem and attempted to abduct two wounded Palestinians, Mo’tasem Nabil Shweiki, age 21, and Mahmoud Emad Shweiki, age 18, who were receiving treatment after being shot by the occupying forces on 7 June in Beit Jala. [Read more…]

9 June 2015 – Letter on the 48th Year of the Israeli Military Occupation

Excellency,

On 5 June, the Palestinian people somberly marked the 48th year of the Israeli military occupation.  As this belligerent foreign occupation of our land and subjugation of our people inconceivably approaches a half-century of duration, we call on the international community to affirm the illegality of the Israeli occupation, a cruel and devastating occupation that has gravely violated every provision of the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War (Fourth Geneva Convention), the body of international humanitarian law governing situations of foreign occupation.  That law stipulates that occupation is a temporary situation, not an indefinite situation imposed to facilitate the occupying Power’s unlawful oppression and forced displacement of the occupied civilian population and the colonization and de facto annexation of the occupied land. [Read more…]

11 May 2015 – Israeli Violations and Anti-Peace Stance

Excellency,

In both word and deed, the new Israeli Government is proving its anti-peace, anti-two-State stance as it persists with unlawful policies and practices entrenching its illegitimate occupation and colonization of the State of Palestine, including East Jerusalem, and systematically and grossly violating the human rights of the Palestinian people. [Read more…]

1 May 2015 – Israeli Occupying Force Violations Against Palestinian Children

Excellency,

I write to draw your attention to the critical situation ongoing in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and more specifically, to the grave reality faced by Palestinian children as a direct result of the Israeli military occupation.

The vulnerability of Palestinian children is deepening as they continue to bear the brunt of increasingly oppressive, violent and illegal Israeli policies and practices being systematically perpetrated against the Palestinian people. For nearly 50 years, Palestinian children have suffered at the hands of Israeli occupying forces and will tragically continue to suffer as long as Israel, the occupying Power, remains immune from consequences for their human rights violations and crimes.  In this regard, we are of the firm conviction that only accountability can remedy the prevailing culture of impunity and compel respect for international law and human rights. [Read more…]

17 April 2015 – Palestinian Prisoners’ Day

Excellency,

I have the honor to enclose herewith an unofficial translation of a report authored by the State of Palestine Ministry of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs’ Commission of Palestinian Prisoners and Detainees in Israeli Prisons on the occasion of Palestinian Prisoners’ Day, commemorated by the State of Palestine annually on 17 April. This report briefly reflects the tragic reality for the thousands of Palestinian men, women and children living under Israeli occupation for nearly 50 years who have been subjected to arrest, detention and grave abuses at the hands of the occupying Power. The threat of arbitrary detention and imprisonment is constant and consistent, as is evident by this report, and the impact on the Palestinian people and society has been devastating. [Read more…]

13 April 2015 – Grave Situation of Palestine Refugees in Yarmouk

Excellency,

In follow up to the emergency consultations of the Security Council on 6 April, I convey once again the grave concerns of the Palestinian leadership about the dire situation of Palestine refugees in Syria as a result of the ongoing armed conflict there.  In particular, we continue to call the international community’s attention to the humanitarian catastrophe in the Yarmouk refugee camp.

As indicated in the briefing to the Security Council by the Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Mr. Pierre Krähenbühl, the situation in the Yarmouk refugee camp has precipitously deteriorated following the 2 April takeover of the camp by terrorists affiliated with ISIL and other terror groups.  It is a situation constituting a direct threat to the lives of the nearly 18,000 Palestine refugees that remain in the camp of the original 160,000 residents. Refugees are suffering death and injury, as well as further destruction of their homes, dispossession and displacement, as the wanton violence rages around them. [Read more…]

25 March 2015 – Intensification and Punitive Israeli Practices

Excellency,

Global hopes for peace have been further diminished by recent confirmations of the Israeli Prime Minister’s anti-peace stance.  His blatant rejection of the two-State solution endorsed for decades by the international community, along with his racist rant against the Palestinian-Arab citizens of Israel and the inflammatory rhetoric of his extremist cohorts, indicate the depth of Israel’s intransigence and contempt for international law, human rights and the fundamental principles of democracy, equality and justice.

The words of Israeli leaders continue to translate directly into unlawful and inhumane deeds, causing more suffering and loss for the Palestinian people under this nearly half-century belligerent military occupation.  The critical situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem – the territory constituting the State of Palestine – continues to deteriorate as illegal and punitive measures by Israel, the occupying Power, against the Palestinian people continue apace. This toxic combination of developments, at the political, security and humanitarian levels, should be cause for alarm and should prompt urgent international action to prevent further destabilization and salvage the minimal prospects for peace before it is too late. [Read more…]

27 February 2015 – Israeli Attack of Christian Seminary and Rise in Settlement Construction

Excellency,

In follow up to my recent letter regarding the vile terror attacks being committed by Israeli settlers against Palestinian civilians and properties, I regret to inform you of another attack yesterday on a Christian holy site.  Such vicious attacks, directly aimed at insulting and intimidating Palestinian Muslims and Christians, are inflaming religious sensitivities and tensions and risk instigating the outbreak of a religious war, with all of the grave ramifications in this regard.

Yesterday, 26 February, extremist Israeli settlers set fire to a Christian seminary belonging to the Greek Orthodox Church in the Old City of Occupied East Jerusalem.  Extensive damage was caused by this blatant act of terrorism, including the burning of a school room in the seminary and the spray-painting of hate graffiti about Jesus on the seminary’s walls consisting of vulgar and offensive words that cannot be printed in such a diplomatic correspondence.  This crime comes on the heels of the attack a day earlier on a mosque in the village of Jaba’a in the Bethlehem area, where Israeli settlers also burned the mosque and defiled its walls with graffiti.

Such attacks have been repeatedly perpetrated by gangs of racist, extremist and terrorist Israeli settlers, who have been deliberately transferred to the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, by Israel, the occupying Power, in grave breach of international law.  As such, Israel bears ultimate responsibility for the presence of the settlers on our land and for all of their crimes, including all acts of terror. [Read more…]