Thursday, January 24, 2013

To the Hague

The Palestinians threaten to take Israel to the Hague:

The Palestinians declared Wednesday that they will have no choice but to complain about Israel to the International Criminal Court if the Jewish state proceeds with plans to build housing on land the Palestinians want for a future state.

Speaking to reporters after a meeting of the U.N. Security Council on the Middle East, Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad Malki said his government's decision will largely depend on what the Israelis do with the so-called "E1" area outside the Arab suburbs of East Jerusalem.

"If Israel would like to go further by implementing the E1 (settlement) plan and the other related plans around Jerusalem then yes, we will be going to the ICC," he said. "We have no other choice. It depends on the Israeli decision."

The Palestinians have previously suggested that bringing their various disputes with Israel to the Hague-based court was an option, but Malki's remarks on Wednesday were the most direct threat his government has made against the Jewish state to date.

The International Criminal Court prosecutes charges of genocide, war crimes and other major human rights violations. The Palestinians must first apply to join the court, and once a member they could refer Israel for investigation.

The Palestinians became eligible to join the ICC after the U.N. General Assembly upgraded the Palestinians' status at the world body in November from "observer entity" to "non-member state," a move that was widely seen as a de facto recognition of an independent Palestinian state.

After the November 29 vote - on the 65th anniversary of the adoption of U.N. resolution 181 that partitioned Palestine into separate Jewish and Arab states - Israel announced it would build 3,000 more settler homes in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, which are areas the Palestinians want for a future state, along with Gaza.

E1 covers some 12 square km (4.6 square miles) and is considered particularly important because it not only juts into the narrow "waist" of the West Bank, but also backs onto East Jerusalem, where Palestinians want to establish their capital.

Approximately 500,000 Israelis and 2.5 million Palestinians live in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. The United Nations deems all Israeli settlements in the West Bank to be illegal.


The E-1 (East-One) plan was developed but not implemented by Yitzhak Rabin in 1994. It would allow for fifteen thousand residences to be built in a corridor between Jerusalem and an Israeli settlement called Maale Adumim. Because it allows access to the hotly contested Jerusalem, the Palestinian leadership wants it badly.

If the Palestinians do manage to get the Hague to hear their case, I hope the Israelis include in evidence their claims to Jerusalem, Hamas' repeated insistence that Israel be destroyed and its attempts to do so, how much aid Israel gives to the Palestinians and how none of the Arab states offer solace, normal residence or anything else to them.


Man with Hat said...

"If the Palestinians do manage to get the Hague to hear their case, I hope the Israelis include in evidence their claims to Jerusalem,"

I hope the Israelis just ignore the Hague and don't even attend their lunacy. :)

Osumashi Kinyobe said...

I'm sure they will. I don't see the Hague being sympathetic to them.