HRW Says Israel Enforcing Apartheid

The Human Rights Watch says Israel is enforceing an apartheid system in the occupied West Bank by indulging its own population while depriving the Palestinians.

The New York-based rights group’s representative Carroll Bogert said, "Palestinians face systematic discrimination merely because of their race, ethnicity, and national origin, depriving them of electricity, water, schools, and access to roads," AFP reported on Saturday.

"While Israeli settlements flourish, Palestinians under Israeli control live in a time warp — not just separate, not just unequal, but sometimes even pushed off their lands and out of their homes," the official said.

Israel proceeds adamantly with the construction of the settlements on the occupied Palestinian territories of the West Bank and East al-Quds (Jerusalem), it occupied in 1967 and later annexed in a move not recognized by the international community.

The settlements themselves are also considered illegal under the international law due to their construction on occupied land.

Tel Aviv refused to extend a partial freeze on the settlement activities in late September, thus stalling direct talks with the Palestinian Authority that had resumed earlier that month in the United States.

The Palestinians say that the settlement construction is being carried out to prevent the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

The HRW also cautioned the world states against abetting Israel’s contravention of the international law. Among other things, the countries would have to stop providing Tel Aviv with assistance to avoid the complicity.

"The United States, which provides 2.75 billion dollars in aid to Israel annually, should suspend financing to Israel in an amount equivalent to the costs of Israel’s spending in support of settlements,” the group said in a report. Tel Aviv spent some USD 1.4 billion in 2003 to buttress the settler units, it said.

(Press TV)

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