Palestinians have warned that the new measures to fight terrorism that were approved by the Israeli security cabinet on Saturday night won’t stop the violence, but would further deteriorate the situation.
The Palestinian Authority, whose leaders held another meeting in Ramallah to discuss the latest developments in the West Bank and east Jerusalem, condemned the measures, dubbing them collective punishment and a breach of international law.
A Palestinian official denounced the “racist” measures and said that PA President Mahmoud Abbas will raise the issue with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken during their meeting in Ramallah later this week.
“The new punitive and racist measures will lead to an explosion, not only in the Palestinian territories, but the entire region,” the official cautioned. “The Israeli government has waged war on the Palestinian people.”
“The new punitive and racist measures will lead to an explosion, not only in the Palestinian territories, but the entire region. The Israeli government has waged war on the Palestinian people.”Palestinian official
The measures announced by the security cabinet include sealing the home of the terrorist in the Friday night attack in Neve Ya'acov ahead of imminent demolition; revoking National Insurance rights and additional benefits for the families of terrorists that support terrorism, and legislation on the revocation of Israeli identity cards of these families.
The security cabinet announced that firearm licensing for civilians will be expedited and expanded in order to enable thousands of additional citizens to carry weapons. It also announced steps to strengthen settlements but did not provide any details.
Are Israel's new measures violations of international law?
The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that the new Israeli measures are a “flagrant violation of international law and the Geneva Conventions.”
The ministry condemned the measures as “collective punishment, which is an extension of the occupation’s scheme to undermine the Palestinian presence in Jerusalem and empty it from its original inhabitants.”
The ministry said the measures are a “clear expression of the Israeli government’s crises, which it’s trying to export to the Palestinian side.”
“The ministry considers that these arbitrary measures reflect a racist and arrogant colonial mentality,” the Palestinian ministry added. “These measures will add fuel to the fire.”
The ministry repeated the Palestinian leadership’s accusation that Israel bears full responsibility for the “dangerous escalation.” It also renewed its demand that the US administration and international community exert pressure on Israel to halt “unilateral measures” and adhere to international resolutions pertaining to the Israeli-Arab conflict.
Palestinian political activists in the West Bank and Gaza Strip said that they expect the new Israeli measures to aggravate tensions and violence. The activists warned that the measures, especially the expansion of weapons licensing for civilians, would encourage “extremist settlers” to step up their attacks against Palestinians.
“The new measures pave the way for a new intifada,” Mustafa al-Sawwaf, a Hamas-affiliated political analyst, told the Palestinian news website Safa.
“The new measures pave the way for a new intifada.”Mustafa al-Sawwaf
Hamas also condemned the new measures as collective punishment, saying they reflect Israel’s growing inability to confront the Palestinians on the ground.
“These measures reflect the weakness of the occupation in the face of the will of the Palestinian fighter,” said Hamas spokesperson Hazem Qassem. “They also illustrate the fragility of the Zionist security system in the face of the Palestinian revolution.”
According to Qassem, the Israeli measures “won’t stop the legitimate resistance of the Palestinians against the occupation.”
Palestinian Islamic Jihad, the second largest terror group in the Gaza Strip after Hamas, said that the new measures “will increase the determination of the Palestinian people and their resistance to continue the confrontation [with Israel].”