Human Rights Council to send Commission of Inquiry to Occupied Palestinian Territories

A Special Session on the Human Rights Situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, including East Jerusalem, was held yesterday in the UN Human Rights Council.

In her address to the Human Rights Council, Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, called for “powerful entities, such as the Security Council, and individual States with serious leverage over the parties to this dreadful and interminable conflict” to do more to bring it to an end once and for all.

A resolution was adopted calling for an immediate cessation of Israeli military assaults throughout the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and an end to attacks against all civilians, including Israeli civilians.

The resolution also condemned in the strongest terms the widespread, systematic and gross violations of international human rights and fundamental freedoms arising from the Israeli military operations carried out in the Occupied Palestinian Territory since 13 June 2014, particularly the latest Israeli military assault on the occupied Gaza Strip.

An independent, international commission of inquiry will now be dispatched to investigate all violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law.

Professor Alan Miller,Chair of the Scottish Human Rights Commission, said:

“I fully welcome Navi Pillay’s assertion that the situation in the Gaza strip is critical for the civilians living there and must be urgently addressed. The Human Rights Council’s adoption of this resolution to ensure the respect of international law and dispatch of an independent, international inquiry is an essential first step towards achieving peace and full accountability for all violations of international human rights and humanitarian law in the region.

Once again we express our sincere support and solidarity to our colleagues in the Palestinian National Human Rights Institution, the Palestinian Independent Commission on Human Rights, and all human rights defenders who courageously continue to monitor and report on human rights violations in the area.”

Read the Resolution in Word format.

Navi Pillay’s full statement is available here on the UN website.