Amnesty International report alleging ‘apartheid’ in Israel draws fierce criticism – POLITICO

A report by Amnesty International accusing the Israeli authorities of practising the worldwide crime of “apartheid” in its therapy of Palestinians drew fierce criticism even earlier than its publication Tuesday.

The greater than 200-page report by the London-based NGO concludes that Israel has “perpetrated the worldwide incorrect of apartheid, as a human rights violation and a violation of public worldwide regulation,” concerning the therapy of Palestinians each inside Israel and Palestinian territories.

“There isn’t any doable justification for a system constructed across the institutionalized and extended racist oppression of hundreds of thousands of individuals,” stated Agnès Callamard, secretary-general of Amnesty International, in an announcement.


Sacha Deshmukh, CEO of Amnesty International U.Okay., called on London to rethink its international coverage concerning Israel, citing the report’s findings.

“For too lengthy the U.Okay. has tried to take a seat on the fence in relation to Israel’s shameful human rights report — successfully turning a blind eye to the systematic discrimination towards Palestinians amounting to a system of apartheid,” Deshmukh stated, including that British ministers ought to make use of the nation’s “shut diplomatic ties with Israel to carry it to account for its crushing system of apartheid.”

The report acquired condemnation even earlier than its launch from Jewish organizations and Israeli officers, who called on Amnesty to not publish it. Amnesty International “is simply one other radical group that echoes propaganda with no severe examination,” Israeli Overseas Minister Yair Lapid said Monday. “As an alternative of searching for information, Amnesty quotes lies unfold by terrorist organizations.”

Lapid additionally alleged that the report was doubtless motivated by anti-Semitism. “I hate to make use of the argument that if Israel weren’t a Jewish state, no person in Amnesty would dare argue towards it, however in this case, there isn’t any different chance,” he stated.


Comparable experiences accusing Israel of the worldwide crime of apartheid by Israeli human rights group B’Tselem and the New York-based Human Rights Watch have additionally drawn backlash over the previous yr.

Amnesty International’s personal German department posted a press release on the findings of the report, but additionally added a disclaimer stating that because of the historical past of the Holocaust and rising anti-Semitic assaults in Germany, “the German Amnesty part is not going to plan or perform any actions” primarily based on the report, “in order to counteract the danger of the report being instrumentalized or misinterpreted.”

Fierce criticism of the report additionally got here from abroad.

“The gist of the report is the outrageous accusation that Israel, the lone democracy in the Center East, practices apartheid,” said David Harris, CEO of the American Jewish Committee, on Sunday, properly earlier than the publication of the report. “This needs to be rejected unequivocally.”


Harris additionally pushed again towards comparisons to the system of institutionalized racial segregation in South Africa from 1948 to 1994, arguing that Arab Israelis are properly represented throughout varied sectors in Israel and in the nation’s political system: In June, the United Arab Listing grew to become a part of the Israeli authorities.

“The delicate governing coalition that runs [Israel] is fully depending on an Arab political social gathering,” Harris stated, including that like all nations, Israel has social shortcomings. “However to equate these shortcomings with the system of apartheid in South Africa is nothing wanting a canard.”

Israeli Overseas Minister Lapid additionally pointed to different nations that he argued Amnesty ought to scrutinize as an alternative of Israel.

“Amnesty doesn’t name Syria an ‘apartheid state’ — a rustic whose authorities murdered half one million of its personal residents — nor Iran or some other corrupt and murderous regime in Africa or Latin America,” he stated.

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