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Economic and Social Council
30 January 2001
COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
Item 9 of the provisional agenda
QUESTION OF THE VIOLATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS AND FUNDAMENTAL FREEDOMS
IN ANY PART OF THE WORLD
Written statement* submitted by the Organization for Defending Victims of
Violence, a non-governmental organization in special consultative status
The Secretary-General has received the following written statement which is circulated in accordance with Economic and Social Council resolution 1996/31.
[12 January 2001]
*This written statement is issued, unedited, as received from the submitting non-governmental organization(s).
21. Despite repeated declarations from the United Nations and international human rights organizations, Israel continues to use lethal force against unarmed civilians. The Organization for Defending Victims of Violence has stressed repeatedly over the period of the current Intifada that such acts constitute crimes of war. The killing of a resident of occupied territory in circumstances that are not life threatening to the army of occupation is willful killing, and is thus a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention (art 146,147). Moreover, article 32 of the convention stipulates: "The High Contracting Parties specifically agree that each of them is prohibited from taking any measure of such a character as to cause the physical suffering or extermination of protected persons in their hands. The prohibition applies not only to murder, torture, but also to any other measures of brutality whether applied by civilian or military agents." In light of the enormous loss of life over the past few months, with most of those killed being unarmed Palestinian civilians, the Organization for Defending Victims of Violence calls on the High contracting parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to abide by their article 1 obligation and ensure Israel's adherence to the Conventions provisions pertinent to territories under belligerent occupation. The Organization for Defending Victims of Violence calls on the Commission on Human Rights to condemn such cruelties and atrocities which have happened during the past months in the occupied territories by the Israeli army.