Amnesty International accuses Israel of apartheid

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Amnesty International accuses Israel of apartheid in dealing with the Palestinians © Sebastian Kahnert / dpa

The human rights organization Amnesty International accuses Israel of committing the crime of apartheid in its dealings with the Palestinians.

London – Apartheid is the doctrine of the separation of individual ethnic population groups called, especially until 1994 in South Africa. “We have found that Israel’s cruel policies of segregation, dispossession and exclusion in all of its controlled areas clearly amount to apartheid,” Amnesty International Secretary-General Agnès Callamard said in a statement on Tuesday. “The international community has an obligation to act.”

Israel’s Foreign Ministry rejected the Amnesty report’s criticism before it was published. “The report solidifies and repeats lies, inconsistencies and unsubstantiated claims made by well-known anti-Israel hate organizations, all with the aim of reselling damaged goods in new packaging,” the statement said. With the publication, the organization uses a double standard and uses “demonization to delegitimize Israel. These are the very ingredients that make up modern anti-Semitism.”

There are no allegations of this kind against Syria, Iran or corrupt and murderous leaders in Africa or Latin America, it said. Israel as a Jewish state, on the other hand, becomes a target. Israel is a strong democracy that grants all its citizens equal rights, regardless of religion and race. “The report denies the State of Israel the right to exist as a nation state for the Jewish people.”

The President of the Central Council of Jews in Germany, Josef Schuster, said: “I also consider it negligent to publish such a report because it will further fuel the already widespread Israel-related anti-Semitism in Europe.” The German section of Amnesty must fulfill its responsibility and “dissociate itself from the anti-Semitic report”.

In the report, Amnesty International describes how, from the organization’s perspective, Israel exercises a “system of oppression and domination” towards the Palestinians, both within Israel itself and in the Palestinian territories and other countries. These included the confiscation of Palestinian land, unlawful killings and drastic restrictions on movement, it said.

The human rights organization headquartered in London called on the International Criminal Court to take the facts of apartheid into account in investigations. Amnesty also called on the UN Security Council to impose an arms embargo on Israel and sanctions. Apartheid is an internationally defined crime against humanity. (dpa)

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