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Israel and Palestine

Volume 724: debated on Tuesday 13 December 2022

11. What recent assessment he has made of Israel’s compliance with its obligations under international law in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. (902767)

As a friend of Israel, we have a regular dialogue on human rights and all matters relating to the occupation. That includes encouraging the Government of Israel to abide by their obligations under international law. We are concerned by instability on the west bank and call on all sides to work together to urgently de-escalate the situation.

In the past year, we have had three compelling reports, produced by Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and the Israeli organisation B’Tselem. All of them accuse the Israeli authorities of committing the crime of apartheid. We have had plans published recently to effectively annex the west bank into Israel, and we now have the appointment of violently racist Ministers into the Israeli Government. Is it not time to step up the diplomatic pressure on Israel to ensure that it abides by international law and upholds the rights of Palestinians?

First, we do not recognise the terminology about apartheid. Any judgment on serious crimes under international law is a matter for judicial decision, rather than for Governments or non-judicial bodies. We do work closely with the Israeli Government. We condemn any incidents of violence by settlers against the Palestinians.