The protection of Palestinian civilians could be improved by the deployment of UN-mandated armed forces or unarmed observers, a beefed-up UN civilian presence or expanded UN assistance, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres wrote in a report on Friday.
Guterres' propositions follow General Assembly resolution in June condemning violence in the Striphttps://t.co/i20e3sn7mI
— Haaretz.com (@haaretzcom) August 18, 2018
The United Nations General Assembly requested the report in a resolution adopted in June that condemned Israel for excessive force against Palestinian civilians and denounced the firing of rockets from Gaza into Israeli civilian areas.
The resolution asked for proposals to ensure
“The safety, protection, and well-being of the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation, including … recommendations regarding an international protection mechanism.”
#UN chief Antonio #Guterres said that options to protect #Palestinian civilians under #Israeli occupation range from establishing an armed force to deploying civilian observers or beefing up the UN presence https://t.co/sJ4WoFEqWZ
— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) August 18, 2018
Guterres outlined four options, but he did not make a specific recommendation. He noted that all options would need the cooperation of both parties, a sustained cessation of hostilities and additional resources to ensure they were viable. He wrote:
“The combination of prolonged military occupation, constant security threats, weak political institutions, and a deadlocked peace process provides for a protection challenge that is highly complex politically, legally and practically.”
#UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has put forward options meant to protect #Palestinian civilians, among them the deployment of an armed military or police force to the occupied territories. https://t.co/dKrQuwoCIE
— Chicago Anonymous (@Chicago_Anon) August 18, 2018
Armed UN peacekeepers or armed forces from a group of like-minded states operating under a United Nations mandate could be deployed to offer physical protection, Guterres said. This option, however, would need a Security Council mandate and the United States, a close ally of Israel, would likely wield its veto.
A UN or non-UN civilian observer mission could be deployed “with a specific mandate to report on protection and well-being issues and provide local mediation,” Guterres added. This would also need a UN-mandate.
Isreal Israel rejects UN report on protecting Palestinians: UNITED NATIONS: Israel has rejected a report by UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres outlining options for strengthening the protection of Palestinians in Israeli-occupied territories. Israel's… https://t.co/Lan567auz9
— George McGMaryland (@McGMaryland) August 18, 2018
A third option could be expanding current UN programs and development and humanitarian aid to address the needs of Palestinian civilians more effectively and strengthen Palestinian institutions, he wrote.
The final option could be to send additional UN human rights, coordination, and political officers to boost monitoring and reporting on the situation and increase the UN’s visibility, Guterres said.
— Somtribune (@somtribune) August 18, 2018
The General Assembly resolution requesting the report was adopted with 120 votes in favor, eight against and 45 abstentions. It was put forward in the General Assembly after the United States vetoed a similar resolution in the 15-member UN Security Council.
“The best way to ensure the safety and protection of the Palestinian civilian population is still the negotiation of a comprehensive, just and final settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict.”
(MEMO, PC, Social Media)