SIR – Barry Shaw talks of peace but his quasi-state Israeli Institute for Strategic Studies promotes an Israel which rejects the peaceful proposal of a two-state solution favoured by the rest of the world.
The Institute states on its website: ‘Anyone who thinks that a full and permanent peace will be achieved by the creation of a Palestinian state is delusional,’ proving again, if needed, that Israel has no sincere intention of peaceful resolution of what they term ‘the Palestinian problem.’
The Israeli military occupation, forced removals and illegal confiscation of Palestinian land and natural resources for Jewish immigrant grant-aided settlers with no prior connection to the area is not only unjust but also stands in violation of numerous UN resolutions, Geneva Conventions and international law. There are currently over 600,000 settlers now on Palestinian land and still recruitment continues.
This is not a ‘Palestinian problem,’ but one of ethnic cleansing where people are kicked out of their homes and violently intimidated on a daily basis with houses ransacked, water and power restrictions imposed and schools destroyed. It is a problem caused by Israeli occupation through displacement which will never allow for a peaceful resolution so long as it continues.
The Control of Economic Activity (Occupied Territories) Bill recently passed its first reading (78 votes to 45) and its passage into law has become all the more urgent following the Israeli government’s recent announcement of plans to build thousands more homes in illegal settlements, further undermining the possibility of achieving a peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict based on two states.
Products we buy in our supermarkets or farmers’ markets, such as Ahava Dead Sea Laboratories beauty products, from Israeli Occupied Territories, deprive Palestinians of their homes, their farms, natural resources and their livelihoods. Such trade legitimises illegal occupation and is in blatant disregard forinternational law. Our ex-Attorney General and others have confirmed that there would be no conflict with EU law.
That Simon Coveney and his FG party seek to prevent the passage of the bill supported by the majority in the Dail and the public would be to deny Ireland decisive action in an attempt to bring the terrible suffering of Palestinian people to a just and peaceful end. Sanctions against apartheid in South Africa proved that such actions have positive consequences.
It is time the government resisted pressure from the US-Israeli political and corporate lobby intent on an ever-expanding Israel with still more Palestinians forced into exile to become refugees for the world to accommodate.
I would add my appeal to those of Trocaire, Christian Aid, human rights charities, Bishops Noel Treanor and Alan McGuckian that people should contact their TDs calling on them to support the bill and take a stand against injustice and illegality which perpetuates this human misery.