Abbas says he expects Trump to respond to Palestinian concerns

Kristopher Drake
March 18, 2017

The report says that Israel is guilty of pursuing a policy of "strategic fragmentation" of the Palestinians as the "principal method" by which Israel imposes an apartheid regime.

"First, the question of whether the State of Israel is constituted as an apartheid regime springs from the same body of global human rights law and principles that rejects anti-Semitism: that is, the prohibition of racial discrimination".

According to Khalaf, it is the first report of its kind published by a United Nations body.

The report published Wednesday, titled "Israeli Practices towards the Palestinian People and the Question of Apartheid", says that "available evidence establishes beyond a reasonable doubt that Israel is guilty of policies and practices that constitute the crime of apartheid as legally defined in instruments of global law".

The ESCWA, which comprises 18 Arab countries in West Asia, hoped the report prompt action by the UN.

The publication comes amid renewed debate about whether, through its settlement policy and rejection of Palestinian self-determination, the Israeli government is creating - or even has already created - a de facto "one-state", which critics warn would constitute a form of apartheid. "That it was drafted by Richard Falk, a man who has repeatedly made biased and deeply offensive comments about Israel and espoused ridiculous conspiracy theories, including about the 9/11 terrorist attacks, is equally unsurprising".

The report - entitled "Israeli Practices Toward the Palestinian People and the Question of Apartheid" - has drawn swift criticism from the United Nations and Israeli officials.

According to U.N. Under-Secretary General and ESCWA Executive Secretary Rima Khalaf, the report was the first of its kind from a U.N. body.

Falk, who has served as the United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, had said Israeli policies had unacceptable characteristics of colonialism, apartheid and ethnic cleansing, Press TV reported. Others, however, have also condemned the state of Israel for political and economic apartheid.

Greenblatt pointed out that the meeting was positive and productive on the current situation, noting that they talked about how to move towards peace and strengthen the capacity of the Palestinian security forces.

"The secretary-general demanded yesterday that I withdraw the report, and I refused", she said, going on to say: "I believe that discrimination on the basis of skin colour, religion or ethnicity is unacceptable".

Emmanuel Nahshon, a spokesman for the Israeli Foreign Ministry, compared ESCWA's findings to Nazi propaganda.

Other reports by Ligue1talk

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