A United Nations panel has called on Israel to stop the destruction of the Palestinian houses and structures in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem.
"These actions by the Israeli authorities violate human rights and humanitarian law and must end immediately," the UN special rapporteurs on the rights to housing, food, and drinking water said in a statement issued in Geneva on Tuesday.
The rapporteurs added, “The impact and discriminatory nature of these demolitions and evictions is completely unacceptable," AFP reported.
The panel of three independent UN human rights experts reporting to the UN Human Rights Council stated, in some places, there are nearly weekly burnings of Palestinian villagers’ property, agricultural fields and fruit trees by Israeli settlers residing on the occupied Palestinian territories.
According to the UN experts, since January this year, the Israelis had destroyed over 387 structures, including 140 residential and 79 structures for agriculture or livelihood. This vandalism of the Palestinian property resulted in the forced displacement of 755 people and impacted the lives of 1,500 individuals.
Raquel Rolnik, the special rapporteur on the right to adequate housing, said that the situation is definitely deteriorating and resulting in increasing human rights violations.
The rapporteur on the right to safe drinking water, Catarina de Albuquerque, said that more than 20 cisterns and 12 wells have been destroyed since the start of 2011, affecting access to drinking water for tens of thousands of Palestinians.
UN’s special rapporteur on the right to food, Olivier De Schutter, added that the destructions by Israelis had worsened food insecurity amongst Palestinians in the occupied West Bank.
In conclusion, the UN panel demanded that Israeli authorities must take steps to stop these destructions and vandalism of Palestinians’ property without more ado.