Palestinians endured century-long second-class treatment - Riyad Al-Maliki

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Maliki
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Maliki. (Photo: Twitter/X)
THE HAGUE – On Monday, Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Maliki addressed the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in its first public session regarding the legal consequences arising from Israel’s policies and practices in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.اضافة اعلان

These hearings come in response to the UN General Assembly’s request for an advisory opinion on the ongoing Israeli occupation, which has persisted for more than 57 years. The hearings will continue for six days, from February 19 to 26, Al-Mamlaka TV reported.

Maliki asserted that it is time to end the double standards in dealing with the Palestinian issue. He called upon the ICJ to support the Palestinian people’s right to self-determination.

Maliki emphasized that, for over a century, the Palestinian people’s right to self-determination has been denied. In his words, this right does not expire, and it is non-negotiable; the Israeli occupation must end.

He further highlighted the genocidal impact on the Palestinian people due to decades of impunity granted to Israel. Maliki urged an end to Israel’s practices and the triumph of international law.

He also stressed the necessity of supporting the path to peace that will achieve justice for the Palestinian people. Israel has left them with only three options: displacement, imprisonment, or death.

“I stand before you on behalf of the State of Palestine and its people in this historic moment. Representing 2.3 million Palestinians in Gaza, most of whom suffer under bombardment by children who are starving and displaced. Representing 3.5 million in the West Bank, including Jerusalem, enduring occupation and racism. And representing nearly 1.7 million Palestinians in the ‘48 territories living in Israel, treated as second-class citizens. Their lands and their ancestors’ lands continue to be stolen,” he stated.

Maliki added that the Palestinian people have been deprived of their rights, including the right of return and the right to determine their destiny. He added that Palestine is not a land without a people; it has social, cultural, economic, and religious life. Schools, universities, villages, families, and cinemas all shaped their existence, influenced by promises made far away, hundreds of thousands of miles from them. The indigenous population, non-Jews, have been denied their humanity and subjected to attempts at dehumanization and displacement.

Maliki emphasized that the UN Charter recognizes the right of peoples to self-determination, which has been compromised due to colonization and apartheid.

He emphasized the suffering that the Palestinian people have endured over many generations, including their expulsion from their land. Notably, during the Nakba in 1948, 900,000 Palestinians were displaced, and an additional 400,000 in 1967 during the Naksa. These injustices persist, accompanied by killings, denial of dignity, and violations of the right to live in safety and stability. Palestinians face imprisonment, abduction, and perpetual incarceration, along with land theft.

The genocidal impact in Gaza, Israel’s destruction, and the deaths of thousands, mostly children, are consequences of Israel’s actions. Maliki called for accountability and adherence to international law.

The ICJ recently granted provisional measures following South Africa’s lawsuit against Israel for committing genocide crimes. Despite this, Israel continues its violations of Palestinian territory for colonial purposes, a malicious breach of international law. Maliki affirmed that the solution lies in immediate compliance with international law and ending the unlawful occupation.

During his speech, Maliki presented maps illustrating Israel’s encroachment on Palestinian lands since the Nakba, through the setback of 1967, up to 2020. He highlighted Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s maps presented at the UN General Assembly, revealing Israel’s intentions at the expense of the Palestinian people. The absence of justice and the violation of fundamental principles of international law underscore the urgency of recognizing the right to self-determination.

Palestine remains committed to the rights of our people to establish an independent state within the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital. This commitment is based on UN Security Council resolutions and international legitimacy, aiming for a permanent solution of two democratic states living side by side in security and stability. 

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