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Human rights violations in the Palestinian territories

Emergency Resolution adopted at the EPP Congress, Helsinki (Finland), 7 – 8 November 2018

Considering:

A) the report “Two Authorities, One Way, Zero Dissent” published by Human Rights Watch (HRW) on 23 October 2018 about the situation for dissidents in the Palestinian territories in which HRW suggests that both the Hamas authorities in Gaza and the Palestinian Authority (PA) in the West Bank systematically and arbitrarily arrest citizens, and threaten, abuse and torture prisoners. According to HRW, these actions could amount to crimes against humanity – they cannot be tolerated in any way.

B) that HRW urges the European Union (EU) and a number of national governments that financially support the PA, to suspend aid to agencies complicit in arbitrary arrests, abuse and torture.

C) that the PA heavily depends on external support and the EU provides training and other supportive measures to its security forces. Alongside Canada, Norway and Turkey, all EU member states have provided aid to the Palestinian Police through the European Union Coordinating Office for Palestinian Police Support (EUPOL COPPS), of a collective sum of 12.372 million Euro in 2017.

D) that the EPP has repeatedly urged the parties in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to resume negotiations with the aim of reaching a peace agreement based on a two-state solution. Peace requires accountability on both sides, and any actor that supports Palestinian statehood has to react and, most importantly, act when PA is cracking down on basic freedoms.

Therefore, the EPP:

1. Urges the EU to immediately suspend its support to the Palestinian police force until the Palestinian Authority has taken effective measures to end its arbitrary arrests and practices of abuse and torture, arresting critics and torturing detainees.

2. Demand the PA conduct thorough, impartial and swift investigations of all allegations of arbitrary arrest, abuse and torture.

3. Stresses the importance of close and thorough monitoring and evaluation of the EU Development Assistance.

4. Urges the parties in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict to resume negotiations with the aim of reaching a peace agreement based on a two state solution.