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Guyana Accuses Israel Of Military Conquest, Annexation Of Palestinian Territory

22.02.2024 02:57

South American country refers to legality of Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory in hearing at International Court of Justice.

Guyana said Wednesday that Israel's occupation of Palestine had reached the level of an "annexation" and this was prohibited by international law.

Its statement came on the third day of hearings at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Netherlands, where more than 50 countries are presenting their arguments on the legal consequences of the Israeli occupation.

Guyana, represented by attorney Edward Craven, argued that Israel's occupation should be a "temporary state of affairs" and that the occupying power should maintain the status quo in the occupied lands without making "permanent changes."

However, according to Craven, Israel's actions indicate no state of "temporariness" because of their forceful nature.

"Permanent occupation is not occupation at all, it is military conquest. It is annexation, and annexation is strictly forbidden under international law. Therefore, it necessarily follows that an occupation intended to be permanent is unlawful under international law. It is indisputable that Israel's occupation of Palestinian territory is unlawful as a whole," he said.

Craven said that Israel aims to change the demographic structure of the region by creating illegal settlements in the occupied lands, especially in East Jerusalem.

He said Israel has put its "expansionist interests" above its obligation to respect the UN Charter and international law for years.

"The result of the deliberate defiance of international law is the consequences for the Palestinian state and the Palestinian people, who have been systematically deprived of their fundamental right to self-determination, for decades," he said, adding that Israel's occupation should be deemed illegal.

Craven also responded to the US, which argued on Wednesday before the high court that Israel should not be ordered to end the occupation.

"The argument advanced by the United States that occupation is governed solely by international humanitarian law leaves no room for the application of the UN Charter or general international law," he said. -

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