UN Official Describes Palestinians’ Plight as Apartheid

Israel was accused of the crime of apartheid in the Occupied Palestinian Territories by the UN-appointed investigator tasked with investigating human rights abuses in Palestinian territories occupied since 1967.

Michael Lynk, the independent expert appointed Special rapporteur by the UN Human Rights Council is the first UN official to describe what other international watchdogs describe as a struggle for equal rights rather than a dispute over land as apartheid.

Ahead of the publication of his full report based on the most recent investigations, Lynk pointed out that five million stateless Palestinians are living without rights, in an acute state of subjugation, and with no path to self-determination or a viable independent state despite the repeated promises of the international community.

He stressed that Israel has cemented Palestinians’ oppression – which can no longer be seen as an unintended consequence of temporary occupation – with the two-tier justice system in the West Bank, adding that there are stark and deeply discriminatory differences in living conditions and citizenship rights and benefits that are maintained through systematic and institutionalized oppression.

Lynk explains that rights and benefits in the Occupied Territories are distributed on the basis of national and ethnic identity among Israeli Jews and Palestinians, which live under a single regime that ensures the supremacy of one group over, and to the detriment of, the other.

Israel was previously accused by other international watchdogs of implementing domination and oppression policies in the Occupied Territories that amount to apartheid.

The latest accusation stemmed from Amnesty International, which pointed out that the apartheid system Israel is operating embraces laws and practices intended to maintain a system of cruel control over Palestinians.

Israel has repeatedly accused the UN of producing biased reports, stressing it’s unfair to blame Israel without considering the security challenges and daily threats to its citizens it faces from armed Palestinian groups.

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