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3 June 2013

Original: English

Human Rights Council
Twenty-third session
Agenda item 7
Human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories

Advance unedited version

Report of the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, Richard Falk*

    In the present report, while noting the continuing non-cooperation of Israel, the Special Rapporteur addresses Israel's Operation “Pillar of Defense” and the general human rights situation in the Gaza Strip, as well as the expansion of Israeli settlements – and businesses that profit from Israeli settlements and the situation of Palestinians detained by Israel.

*Late submission

I. Introduction

II. The Gaza Strip

A. Operation “Pillar of Defense”

B. Economic and social conditions
C. Health in Gaza
D. Ceasefire implementation

III. Palestinian detainees in Israeli prisons and detention centres

IV. Settlements

V. Businesses that profit from Israeli settlements

VI. Recommendations

55. The Special Rapporteur recommends that:

(a) The International Committee of the Red Cross or a commission of inquiry composed of relevant international law experts should convene to examine issues particular to prolonged occupation and move toward a convention to address such occupations;

(b) Israel must allow Palestinians to make use of their maritime area, up to 20 nautical miles in line with its commitments under the Oslo Agreements;

(c) Israel should lift its illegal blockade of Gaza and clearly demarcate ARAs. ARAs can only be established in line with applicable international legal standards and commitments undertaken by the State of Israel;

(d) The international community, with Israel’s full cooperation, should finance the construction of a major desalination facility in Gaza; install solar networks for heat and electricity; and urgently improve sewage treatment to avoid further polluting of the Mediterranean Sea;

(e) The international community, with Israel’s full cooperation and in direct consultation with farmers in Gaza, should support a shift in agricultural production in Gaza to less water-intensive crops, including by facilitating improved access to seeds; should support the improvement of irrigation networks; and should ensure that farmers can utilise their farmland;

(f) The international community, with Israel’s full cooperation, should create a private patients’ fund that could be drawn upon to support medical treatment outside of Gaza as needed;

(g) The international community should establish a commission of enquiry into the situation of Palestinians detained or imprisoned by Israel. This enquiry should have a broad mandate, to examine Israel’s track record of impunity for prison officials and others who interrogate Palestinians;

(h) The international community should investigate the activities of businesses that profit from Israel’s settlements, and take appropriate action to end any activities in occupied Palestine and ensure appropriate reparation for affected Palestinians;

(i) The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, with the support of the Human Rights Council, should establish a mechanism to support Special Rapporteurs who are subject to defamatory attacks, especially those that divert attention from the substantive human rights concerns relevant to their respective mandates.

1 For criteria against which it must be judged, see
3 Israel launches Pillar of Defense amid Gaza escalation, Haaretz, 20 November 2012
4 “Israel's Shortsighted Assassination,” Baskin, NYT, 16 November 2012]
5 U.S. Department of State Press Release, 14 November 2012
6 Shlomo Brom, ed., “Introduction,” The Aftermath of Operation Pillar of Defense, Institute for National Security Studies, 2012.
7 United Nations Country Team, Gaza in 2020: A liveable place? August 2012
8 “Anger at UNRWA in Gaza grows” Al Jazeera, 1 May 2013
10 OCHA Protection of Civilians Weekly Report 19-25 February 2013
11 GFO-DUO Gaza Weekly Update 18-24 March 2013
12 OCHA Protection of Civilians Weekly Report 19-25 February 2013
13 Israel Ministry of Defense, Gaza Crossing Monthly report March 2013.
15 See A/HRC/7/17, A/66/358, A/HRC/20/32, A/66/370 and A/67/550.
16 A/66/358.
17 Recommendations_-_6_March_2013.pdf.
18 A/67/550.
22 See A/66/358 and A/67/550 and Physician's for Human Rights Israel, Oversight and Transparency in the Israeli Penal System, (July 2008)דוח%20שקיפות%20ובקרה.pdf.
23 option=com_content&task=view&id=31&Itemid=74&jumival=8123
24 Addameer, Eight on Hunger Strike: Hunger Strikes are the Weapon of Prisoners in the Fight Against Administrative Detention, 10 March 2013:
26 OCHA Protection of Civilians Weekly Report 23-29 April 2013
27 A/HRC/22/63
28 Report of the Security Council Commission , 12 July 1979 (S/13450)
29 Peace-with-Egypt.shtml
30 Report of the Government of Palestine to the AHLC, 19 March 2013, p.13
31 OCHA Humanitarian Monitor Monthly Report February 2013, p.18
32 Ibid., pp.12-15
33 Civic Coalition for Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem, Urgent Appeal for Action, 6 April 2013
34 OCHA Protection of Civilians Report 30 April to 6 May 2013
35 “Israel Settlements Will Continue To Expand, Says New Housing Minister Uri Ariel”, Reuters, 17 March 2013
36 A/67/379.
37 A/HRC/22/63.
39 Feasting on the Occupation: Illegality of Settlement Produce and the Responsibility of EU Member States under International Law
31 Copy on file with the Special Rapporteur.


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