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9. The Special Rapporteur has also continued to issue urgent appeals and press statements, individually and jointly with other special rapporteurs, in urgent situations related to the right to adequate food in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Romania, the Sudan and Zimbabwe. The Special Rapporteur has also written to Governments seeking information on alleged violations of the right to adequate food, including regarding particular cases in India, Myanmar and the Philippines. Replies from the Governments concerned, except for the Governments of India and Romania, were still awaited at the time of submitting this report. The Special Rapporteur is also grateful for the information he received in reply to his letter addressed to the President of the European Commission, forwarding the above-mentioned report of his mission to the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
II. Situations of special concern
16. The mandate of the Special Rapporteur includes monitoring violations of the right to adequate food and situations of special concern. At the time of writing this report, the Special Rapporteur is particularly concerned about the situation of the right to food in the following countries and areas.
Occupied Palestinian Territories
23. In the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT), the Special Rapporteur is gravely concerned at the continued destruction and expropriation of Palestinian land and crops by the Israeli occupying forces through recent military operations, as well as the building of the “security barrier”. These actions violate the obligations of the occupying army, as the occupying Power, to respect the right to food under international human rights and humanitarian law. Although the Special Rapporteur does not question the right of Israel to defend itself, he must still question the actions of the occupying forces inside Palestinian territories, where these are producing a humanitarian food crisis. As he indicated in the report of his mission in 2003 (E/CN.4/2004/10/Add.2), 22 per cent of Palestinian children are now gravely malnourished and approximately 50 per cent of Palestinians have become dependent on food aid, as restrictions imposed on movement inside the territory have devastated the Palestinian economy. The occupying Power also reportedly extracts more than 85 per cent of the water from the West Bank aquifers. The International Court of Justice has declared the “security barrier” or “Wall” illegal, where it is built inside the Palestinian territories and does not follow the Green Line 1967 border between Israel and the territories. Numerous resolutions of the Commission and the General Assembly have also condemned the occupation and the building of the barrier on Palestinian land, as this requires destruction and confiscation of thousands of hectares of Palestinian land. Depriving thousands of Palestinians of access to their land, farms and livelihoods constitutes a violation of the right to food. The Special Rapporteur urges the Government of Israel to respect its obligations as occupying Power regarding the right to food.
24. In response to the escalation of recent military operations in Gaza, and referring to Commission on Human Rights resolution 2004/19, in which the Commission urged not only States, but also private actors, to promote the effective realization of the right to food, the Special Rapporteur has written to the Caterpillar corporation, expressing concern that the company’s activities in supplying its specially modified armed D-9 and D-10 bulldozers to the occupying army, in full knowledge that they will be used to destroy farmland, greenhouses, crops and olive groves as well as water installations, might amount to complicity with or acceptance of actual and potential violations of the right to adequate food. The Special Rapporteur urges the Caterpillar corporation, and all other corporations, to commit to undertake responsibility to promote the effective realization of the right to food through, at the very least, avoiding complicity with actions that amount to a violation of the obligation to respect the right to food.
V. Conclusions and recommendations
61. The Special Rapporteur submits the following recommendations:
(b) Urgent actions must be taken by the Government of the Sudan and the Government of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea to stop violations of the right to food of their people. The Government of Israel, in accordance with its obligations as occupying Power under international human rights and humanitarian law, should refrain violating the right to food in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The Government of the United States of America should also refrain from imposing measures on the citizens of Cuba that may violate their right to food;