Gaza/Brussels/London – January 24, 2012
The Council for European Palestinian Relations (CEPR) is outraged by the impunity with which Israel acts in East Jerusalem. The latest example was the extra-judicial kidnapping of two more Palestinian Members of Parliament by Israeli security forces.
Mr. Mohammad Tawtah and Mr. Khalid Abu Arafa - both elected members of the Palestinian Legislative Council (PLC) - were taken by force from the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in the East Jerusalem Palestinian neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah where they have been seeking refuge since July 2010.
The CEPR calls on the ICRC to denounce the illegal nature of Israel’s aggression and to appeal to the international judicial bodies to prosecute such violations. The CEPR encourages European Member States to also denounce the Israeli disrespect for international institutional premises.
Speaker of the PLC, Dr. Aziz Dweik, was detained by Israeli forces earlier this month for attempting to convene and re-open PLC meetings. There are currently 27 elected Palestinian politicians imprisoned by Israel.
The Palestinian Parliament has been inactive since the Hamas-Fatah feud in 2007 that led to a severe political split amongst Palestinians. In May 2011, the Palestinian parties did agree to a reconciliation plan for power-sharing that has yet to be implemented.
In the lead-up to the Palestinian elections later this year, the CEPR denounces Israel’s actions as illegal under international law and counter-productive to the promotion of democracy in Palestine and the Arab world at large.
At a time of positive change across North Africa and the Middle East, the CEPR calls on European countries to engage more constructively with the Palestinian parties and to denounce Israel’s actions with more vehemence as has started to happen with recent European reports.
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