EU adopts report blaming Israel for humanitarian crisis in Gaza Strip

PACE adopts report drafted by Swedish MP; Report accuses Israel of many humanitarian abuses, including “systematic and illegal” killings of Palestinians in Gaza Strip; Report calls on EU to seek action against Israel in Criminal Court —

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The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) adopted a report on Tuesday that accuses Israel of numerous human rights abuses, most significantly accusing the IDF of carrying out “systematic and illegal” killings of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.

In an ongoing wave of anti-Israel resolutions and efforts by international bodies, the Council adopted the report on Tuesday in Strasbourg, voting 46-12 with two abstentions. The report was written by Swedish MP of the Swedish Social Democratic Party, Eva-Lena Jansson.

The lengthy report accuses Israel of various human rights abuses, claiming that Palestinians have “documented the killing of 136 Palestinians in Gaza by Israeli live fire in the buffer zone, including 20 children. An additional 1 775 people were injured, including 282 children.” The figures were taken from a Palestinian NGO, Al Mezan.

The report claims that IDF soldiers carried out “deliberate fatal shooting of individuals who posed no imminent danger to life amounts to an appalling pattern of apparently systematic unlawful killings,” and calls on the European Union to “to support the possibility of a formal investigation of the International Criminal Court.”

The report claims that lifting the Israeli “blockade” on the Gaza Strip as a solution to the ongoing humanitarian crises in the Strip, claiming “The blockade of the Gaza Strip imposed by Israel, which entered its tenth year in June 2016, must be lifted. The blockade has subjected the Palestinians living in Gaza to collective punishment in flagrant contravention of international human rights and humanitarian law. The blockade has to end to ensure that the population of Gaza has access to basic and inalienable human rights.”

The report also calls for a two-state solution and unity between the Palestinian Authority and Hamas. It calls on Israel to end settlement growth, claiming that Israeli settlements hinder the “normalization of the humanitarian situation,” claiming that a two-state solution and “cessation of the construction of new settlements and extension of old ones on the Palestinian territory can create the necessary framework for the normalization of the humanitarian situation in Gaza and the promotion of Palestinian State-building.”

The report ends by stating that it is the “the role of the Assembly to encourage the Government of Israel and the Palestinian authorities to start negotiations on a mutual and full commitment to this solution.”