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PLO on Israel's massacre in Gaza

March 31, 2018

PLO Executive Committee Member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi on Israel's massacre in Gaza

"We condemn Israel's brutal murder of 16 unarmed Palestinian protestors in Gaza yesterday, as well as the injury of around 1,700 Palestinians across the occupied Palestinian territory in protests marking the 42nd anniversary of Land Day and affirming the right of return for Palestinian refugees.

The Israeli army used unbridled violence, unleashing more than 100 snipers and firing live ammunition, tear gas and rubber-coated steel bullets against the protestors before the very eyes of the entire international community. Yet, the UN Security Council failed to agree on a statement condemning the egregious violations that occurred at the hands of Israel.

It is even more troubling that the United States and the United Kingdom blocked the statement. Such a counterproductive stance can render them complicit in Israel’s military occupation and in its persistent violations and violence. Neither one has displayed the moral or political courage to hold Israel to account and to curb its illegal behavior.

The international community and all people of conscience are called on to provide protection for the Palestinian people and to put an end to further bloodshed and loss of innocent lives. It is time for the international system to adopt punitive measures and sanctions against Israel in relation to the occupation. Furthermore, the International Criminal Court is called upon to speed up its investigation and to undertake concrete steps in this context.

The Palestinian people's determination to remain on their land and their commitment to the global principles of justice, freedom and self-determination are a remarkable tribute to resilience and humanity.

In the midst of such tragic suffering and painful circumstances, we extend our deepest condolences to the families and loved ones of the victims and wish a speedy recovery to the wounded."

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