NANCY JAISWAL: The Human Rights Council held individual interactive sessions on the report of the High Commissioner for Human Rights for ensuring accountability to all violations of international law in the occupied Palestinian territory.

Addressing the High Commissioner’s report, Ilze Brands Kehris, United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights, said that between November 2018 and 31 October 2019, 131 Palestinians, including 23 children, had been killed by Israeli security forces, whereas 11 Israelis had been killed by Palestinians.

The state of Palestine marked that Israel’s actions went against the recommendations of the Commission of Inquiry, which stated that all crimes committed against Palestinians could constitute war crimes and crimes against.

Amid the interactive session, speakers raised alarm over the findings of the Commission of Inquiry, stating that Israel had the right to self-defense; they condemned its excessive use of force and disproportionate attacks on civilian protesters in Gaza.

Speaking in the interactive session were Pakistan on behalf of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation, European Union, Qatar on behalf of the Arab Group, Bangladesh, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Slovenia, South Africa, Pakistan, Luxembourg, Namibia, Cuba, Malaysia, Jordan, Kuwait, Tunisia, Morocco, Ireland, Egypt, Russian Federation, Syria, Iran, Spain, Mozambique, Turkey, Venezuela, Algeria, Indonesia, Lebanon, China, Libya, Sweden, United Arab Emirates, Sudan, Somalia, France, Albania, and Oman.

Along with some civil society organizations: Institute for NGO Research, International Organization for the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, Palestinian Return Centre Ltd., United Nations Watch, Cairo Institute for Human Rights Studies, Al-Haq Law in the Service of Man, and Mauritanian Association for the Promotion of Human Rights.

Daniela Kravetz, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Eritrea, presenting her oral update, said that she constantly monitored the progress made in relation to five benchmarks: progress in the rule of law, reforms of the national service, progress in promoting civil liberties, progress in promoting women’s rights and gender equality, and improvement in the operating environment for international agencies in Eritrea. During the discussion, speakers said that the mandate of the Special Rapporteur was crucial for improving the human rights situation in Eritrea.

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