10 facts about Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip
1- The West Bank – including East Jerusalem – and the Gaza Strip together constitute what is nowadays called the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT), which have been under Israeli military occupation since June 1967. Before the State of Israel was established in 1948, they were simply parts of Mandate Palestine; their ‘borders’ are the result of Israeli expansion and armistice lines.
2- In 1967, Israeli forces ethnically cleansed and destroyed a number of Palestinian villages during their invasion. 300,000 Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip became refugees during Israel’s occupation in June 1967; the vast majority remain unable to return.
3- The State of Israel has subjected Palestinian citizens and Palestinian non-citizens to military rule for 68 years of occupation.
4- Currently there are more than 500 physical obstacles, including checkpoints and earth mounds that restrict Palestinian freedom of movement in the West Bank.
5- Soon after the occupation in June 1967 Israel sought to transfer its Jewish population into the occupied territories and change their demographic makeup.
6- All Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) are illegal under international law and violate the Fourth Geneva Convention.
7- There are now 125 Israeli government-sanctioned settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT), plus another 100 or so unauthorised settler ‘outposts’.
8- There are around 400,000 Israelis living in illegal settlements the Occupied West Bank. Those illegal settlers can vote, are allowed to build and expand, and have their own network or roads and highways. Unlike settlers, Palestinians under occupation have none of these rights.
9- According to the UN, there have been 2,598 acts of violence by Israeli settlers against Palestinians in the last ten years.
10- Israel enforces a dual legal system in the Occupied Palestinian Territories: civil courts for the 600,000 settlers in West Bank and Jerusalem, and military courts for 4.5 million Palestinians. The latter has a 99.74 percent conviction rate.
According to Human Rights Watch: “Palestinians face systematic discrimination merely because of their race, ethnicity, and national origin.” Amnesty International agrees.
(Source / 16.06.2016)