Forty-seven UN human rights experts, also called Special Rapporteurs, released a statement on Tuesday, contending that the Israeli government’s plan to annex parts of the occupied Palestinian West Bank will violate international law and must be condemned by the international community. In the statement, the human rights experts explained the amount of Palestinian land that would be annexed and how the occupation of the land over the last 53 years has already created “profound human rights violations against the Palestinian people.” From there, the statement went on to say that the result of such an annexation would be “21-st century apartheid.”
In 1980 and 1981, Israel annexed the occupied lands of East Jerusalem and the Syrian Golan Heights, respectively. The human rights experts noted that the UN Security Council condemned those annexations, as it has condemned the present-day settlements. However, the statement notes that the international community has failed to condemn Israel in any way for ignoring the UN’s recent resolutions.
The statement also specifically called out the US for “supporting and encouraging Israel’s unlawful plans for the further annexation of occupied territory.” The human rights experts concluded by stating that “[The United States] should be ardently opposing the imminent breach of a fundamental principle of international law, rather than actively abetting its violation.”