On 31st December 2022, the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) adopted a historic resolution calling on the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to give an advisory opinion relating to the Israeli prolonged occupation of Palestinian territory.
Resolution 77/400, which passed by 87 to 26 with 53 abstentions, asks the court to examine the legal implications of Israel’s ongoing violation of the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination, its 55-year-long occupation, settlement, and annexation of the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967—including measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character, and status of Jerusalem, and from its adoption of related discriminatory legislation and measures.
The resolution further asks the Court to give its opinion on how Israel’s policies and practices affect the legal status of the occupation. The Court will also address the legal consequences that arise for all States and the UN.
As Al Mezan Center for Human Rights welcomes the resolution and emphasizes that its adoption is a significant milestone in the struggle against Israel’s apartheid settler-colonial regime, it regrets that many European Countries either abstained or voted against it. The UNGA’s resolution is a step forward in the way for justice which is intentionally denied to the Palestinian people. Particularly, the resolution comes at a critical time when a new far-right Israeli government has been installed. The Netanyahu-led government vowed to legalize dozens of illegal settlements and annex the West Bank as a top priority.
Al Mezan’s General Director, Mr. Issam Younis, said: “the Israeli occupation is not only illegal but is the longest in modern history. Israel, the occupying power, systematically and gravely violates the basic principles of international law, inter alia, committing war crimes, and crimes against humanity including illegal settlements, willful killings of protected civilians, confiscation of land and destruction of prosperities”.
Al Mezan reaffirms that the absence of accountability is the reason behind the continuation of the perpetuation of atrocities and serious crimes by Israel, the Occupying Power.
Al Mezan urges the international community, to respect the UN’s resolution, and work to bring the Occupation and the plight of the Palestinian people to an end.