Israeli settlements in the occupied West Bank violate Palestinian human rights and must be withdrawn, United Nations investigators said Thursday -- a move described by observers as “unprecedented.” LINK
An international report by the U.N. Human Rights Council said Israel is “committing serious breaches of its obligations under the right to self-determination and under humanitarian law.”
All settlers must begin to withdraw from the occupied territories, the report said. It echoed the earlier claim of Palestinians that the the practices of settlers could be considered possible war crimes by the International Criminal Court.
Israel, which did not cooperate with the investigation, dismissed the document as “biased” and said it would “only hamper efforts to find a sustainable solution to the Israel-Palestinian conflict.”
Tel Aviv-based Haaretz said the “unprecedented” conclusion was the U.N.’s “harshest condemnation of Israeli policy in West Bank since 1967.”
About 250 settlements in the West Bank have been established since 1967 and they hold an estimated 520,000 settlers, the U.N. said.