Calls for Israel to be held responsible by the UN Security Council and the International Criminal Court for its settlement crimes on Palestinian land were voiced by Taysir Khalid, a member of the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine.Khalid said that even in a time of international condemnation of Israel’s actions and where countries such as South Africa and Ireland have taken up action such as boycotting settlement’s products, the Israeli government continues to commit crimes of aggression in occupied Palestinian land.

Proof of this exists in the law “to encourage settlement” which aims to either build new settlements or expand existing settlements. The law was passed by the Knesset yesterday, where only 11 members opposed this law while 33 approved it. As part of the new law, contributing to public institutions that work on encouraging settlements will be recognized through tax credit grants.

Taysir Khalid recalled the decisions of the Executive Committee of the Palestine Liberation Organization which confirmed that in accordance with international humanitarian law and international criminal law, settlements are considered a war crime by the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949 where it states ‘The Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.'(Article 49, paragraph 6) and so called for questioning Israel’s actions and holding it responsible for it’s actions by imposing the appropriate international sanctions and encouraging it to respect international law.