According to UN experts, Israel’s occupation and racism towards Palestinians are the fundamental reasons behind the constant waves of unrest in Israel and Israeli-occupied areas. The United Nations Human Rights Council commissioned a top-echelon group of experts in 2021 to look into “the underlying fundamental causes” of the decades-long crisis, and they placed the blame firmly on Israel.

“Ending Israel’s occupation of territories is critical to breaking the cycle of violence,” the experts stated in the assessment, noting that there is abundant proof that Israel has “no intention” towards ending its colonization. The 18-page study, which was released on Tuesday (June 7), centers upon assessing a lengthy string of previous UN probes, assessments, and decisions on the matter, as well as how and whether the conclusions were followed.

Head researcher Navi Pillay, an erstwhile UN rights director from South Africa, remarked in a recent statement that previous findings’ suggestions were “overwhelmingly focused towards Israel.” This was “an illustration of the conflict’s asymmetrical nature and the reality of one state possessing the other,” she argued. The experts also found that the suggestions “have predominantly not been followed,” she added, citing requests for consequences for Israel’s breaches of international law as well as Palestinian militant organizations’ “indiscriminate firing of rockets” toward Israel.

“At the heart of the systematic recurrence of violations in both the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), including East Jerusalem, is this lack of implementation coupled with a sense of impunity, clear evidence that Israel has no intention of ending the occupation, and persistent discrimination against Palestinians,” the study explained. Israel was attempting “full authority” over the OPT, notably occupied East Jerusalem, according to the study.

As per the report, Israel has been “working to modify the demographic by maintaining a repressive atmosphere for Palestinians and a favorable environment for Israeli settlers.” The study criticized Israel for maintaining “differential civil status, rights, and legal protection” for Palestinian residents of Israel, citing Israeli legislation refusing citizenship to Palestinians wedded to Israeli nationals.

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