Report: Practices and Policies of Racial Discrimination by the Occupying Power in the Occupied Palestinian Territories
Over time, and increasingly, the term “apartheid” has been used to describe the situation in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt). It is hardly surprising that use of the term brings with it a highly charged debate and strong sentiments, given the not so distant and dark history in southern Africa. This legal brief aims to provide a deeper understanding of the normative legal framework regulating and qualifying the debate on racial discrimination, and its relation to apartheid. It does not intend to fully appraise the copious volume of writing that has been produced on the topic thus far but, rather, to examine the relevant issues from the perspective of international law and its applicability in the oPt. More specifically, this brief will examine the rules prohibiting discrimination under both international humanitarian law (IHL) and international human rights law (IHRL), as well as the rules pertaining to racial discrimination, and its relation to apartheid. 1 First, this includes the applicability of IHL and IHRL to the oPt. Second, it analyzes the general prohibition against discrimination under both IHL and IHRL. Third, this brief examines the specific prohibitions against racial discrimination, as well as its relationship to apartheid. Fourth, it assesses the causal relationship between the settlement enterprise and the Occupying Power (OP) practices and policies of racial discrimination in the oPt. Fifth, it looks at third State obligations under international law. Finally, it concludes with a series of policy recommendations to third States.