The Palestinian Authority handed over its written submissions to the International Court of Justice on Monday in order to get a legal opinion on the nature of the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza Strip. The hand-over came during a meeting in The Hague between PA Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Riyad Al-Maliki and ICJ Registrar Philippe Gautier.
Al-Maliki stressed that the submissions are the implementation of UN General Assembly resolutions and ICJ decisions. The move, he explained, is part of the diplomatic and legal action led by the PA to preserve the rights of the Palestinians and protect them from crimes committed by Israel, the illegal occupying power, with the goal of holding Israeli war criminals to account and lifting their immunity from prosecution.
The PA minister pointed out that the submission presents irrefutable evidence and facts of Israel’s illegal policies and practices, and draws a clear picture of the crimes and suffering inflicted upon the Palestinian people over the decades since the 1948 Nakba.
“These facts lead to a direct conclusion that the Israeli colonial occupation and its annexation of Palestinian land, racial discrimination and apartheid against the Palestinian people and its systematic rejection of the inalienable rights of our people are illegal,” said Al-Maliki. “The facts will also lead to a conclusion that the Israeli rejection of the Palestinians’ [legitimate] rights to self-determination and return is [also] illegal.”
The Israeli occupation must end immediately and unconditionally, he insisted. “This naturally creates legal consequences and obligations, for Israel first, and for the states and organisations of the international community to oppose these illegal actions.”