Euro-Med Monitor at HRC: Pressure Israel to prevent death penalty legislation, comply with international law

In a joint statement to the UN Human Rights Council’s 52nd session, Euro-Med Monitor and Youth Parliament for SDG called on all concerned parties to exert serious pressure on the Israeli government to prevent it from passing legislation allowing for the execution of Palestinian detainees, as well as to respect relevant international human rights treaties.

“A key campaign promise by Israel’s current National Security Minister was to introduce capital punishment for Palestinians accused of certain terror offenses,” said the statement. “The Minister has repeatedly threatened to send Palestinians ‘to the electric chair’ and is in the process of legislating the death penalty.”

Delivering the statement to the Council, Euro-Med Monitor’s Partnerships and Communications Coordinator Lara Hamidi said, “What is more concerning is that Palestinians in the occupied territories are tried by kangaroo military courts, with a conviction rate above 99%, which means a total lack of fair trial.”

Israeli actions on the ground already reflect a pattern of systematic extrajudicial executions carried out disproportionately by the Israeli army in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (oPt), particularly in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Furthermore, Hamidi noted that last year saw the highest number of Palestinians killed by Israel in the West Bank since 2004, with 145 Palestinian fatalities. This year is poised to set an even higher record, with 63 Palestinians having been killed in less than two months—70% of whom were below the age of thirty.

“In most of these incidents, Euro-Med Monitor documented flagrant violations of international law,” the statement emphasized, “including shooting to kill as a first resort, even when the target posed no threat; using excessive and disproportionate force; showing serious disregard for civilian lives; and systematically denying medical treatment to wounded Palestinians until they bleed to death.”

The international community must conduct an immediate investigation into Israel’s practices of extrajudicial executions, exert serious pressure on the Israeli government to prevent the introduction of the death penalty, and maintain a protective international presence in the oPt as a necessary step towards preventing further loss of lives, said Euro-Med.

Source: Palestine News & Information Agency