No peace without justice for Palestinians, Amnesty International says amid Arab-Israeli normalisation agreements

No peace without justice for Palestinians, Amnesty International says amid Arab-Israeli normalisation agreements
No peace agreements can bring lasting peace to Palestinians under Israeli occupation without justice and compensation, Amnesty said on Friday, as Bahrain announced normalisation with Israel.
3 min read
12 September, 2020
The remarks come amid announced normalisation of ties between Israel and Arab states [Getty]
Amnesty International warned any process aimed at a just and lasting peace in the Palestinian territories must include the removal of illegal Israeli settlements, in comments made after the latest Arab-Israeli normalisation of ties. 

The leading rights organisation said all systematic violations of human rights must come to an end, while justice and compensation must be delivered to victims of crimes as per international law.

No agreement "can change the legal duties of Israel as an occupying power in according with international humanitarian law and international human rights law, nor deprive the Palestinians of their rights and protections guaranteed by international law", Amnesty said in a statement published on Twitter.

The remarks came just moments after Bahrain announced it would follow the United Arab Emirates in normalising ties with the Jewish state.

US President Donald Trump announced the agreement on Friday, following a three-way phone call he had with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa Al Khalifa. The three leaders also issued a brief six-paragraph joint statement, attesting to the deal.

"Another HISTORIC breakthrough today!" Trump tweeted, in another diplomatic win for the US president less than two months before the the November election.

"This is a historic breakthrough to further peace in the Middle East," Trump, Netanyahu and King Hamad said in the statement.

"Opening direct dialogue and ties between these two dynamic societies and advanced economies will continue the positive transformation of the Middle East and increase stability, security, and prosperity in the region."

Like the UAE agreement, Friday's Bahrain-Israel deal will normalise diplomatic, commercial, security and other relations between the two countries.

Bahrain, along with Saudi Arabia, had already dropped a prohibition on Israeli flights using its airspace. Saudi acquiescence to the agreements has been considered key to the deals.

Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner noted that the agreement is the second Israel has reached with an Arab country in 30 days after having made peace with only two Arab nations - Egypt and Jordan - in 72 years of its independence.

Read also: Trump hints at Saudi participation in UAE-Israel normalisation deal

"This is very fast," Kushner told The Associated Press. "The region is responding very favourably to the UAE deal and hopefully it's a sign that even more will come."

The Palestinian Authority and Islamist movement Hamas both condemned Friday's Israeli-Bahraini normalisation deal as another "stab in the back" by an Arab state and act of "aggression" against their people.

The agreement was "a stab in the back of the Palestinian cause and the Palestinian people", like the UAE-Israel deal announced last month, Ahmad Majdalani, social affairs minister in the West Bank-based PA, told AFP.

Hamas, which controls the Gaza Strip, said it was an "aggression" that dealt "serious prejudice" to the Palestinian cause.

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