Palestinians are suffering from the skewed application of international law

Another slap in the face of the “international community” and the international law.

The latest disfranchisement of Palestinians has been observed as the Israeli occupying forces have demolished a Palestinian village in the Jordan valley — including nearly 80 homes. The “administrative detention” — also known as the kidnapping — of Maher Al-Akhras who recently ended his 103 days hunger strike should not be a “business as usual” event for the “international community” by giving the usual condemnation and lip service to the Palestinians.

Don’t be illusioned by the so-called “Peace deal” between the Israeli regime and the regimes in the UAE and Bahrain. These deals were promoted by the UAE as a “bargaining tool” to halt the annexation of Palestinian land. These are only weapons deals for regimes to continue their subjugation of the regions’ societies on the one hand and a way to create a pact against the so-called Iranian “threat” on the other hand. The European Union even praised the deals as a ‘positive contribution to peace and stability to the Middle East.’ However, many observers stated that such deals will bring the middle east further to the cliff’s edge.

A short excerpt from Nader Hashemi’s latest essay on the so called “peace deals” gives us a hint to where these deals could lead:

“The future of the Middle East looks bleak. All the key social indicators suggest that the region is headed for a coming explosion. The current authoritarian order is unsustainable given the volatile mix of repressive states with youthful populations and dim economic prospects. When the next Arab uprising for dignity and democracy takes place, it will be angrier and more violent than the one that preceded it. A key target of this anger will be leaders of the “Axis of Arab Autocracies,” but also their Israeli ally, an ally that is today proudly and openly helping to sustain their autocratic rule.”

This continuous subjugation of the region’s societies and the complicit involvement of the EU for the sake of “stability” and the free flow of capital is just a recipe for disaster.

The skewed treatment of international law.

Another example of land grabbing and the continuous failing to abide by international law from countries with colonial histories is the case of Chagos Islands, that lies between Sri Lanka and Madagascar. The UK had split them from Mauritius in 1965 and since then maintained administrative control over the islands. In 2019, the ICJ in Hague has delivered a judgement that the UK has to give the islands back to Mauritius that was passed as non-binding resolution by UNGA. However, the UK has refused to meet the deadline to hand the island back. This is another example of how national ruling interests are still drunk with their own colonial legacy.

This is not the first slap nor the last in the face of international law. The invasion of Iraq, the bombing of Libya, war in Yemen, sanctions on Iran and Venezuela, and the silence towards the coup that happened in Bolivia are just a shortlist of the atrocities that remain uncontested. This systematic ignorance of international law and justice is only adding fuel to the fire, forcing people to the extremes and stripping them from their dignity and freedom.

As citizens of democratic states, we must urge all EU member states to move forward from the usual condemnation and press releases to practical steps; to abide by international law and to their national laws by first stopping weapons sales to regimes involved in acts of occupation and of human rights violations.

Mohammad Khair Nahhas is a member of DiEM25’s Peace and International Policy DSC. 

Photo Source: United Nations

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