The hypocrisy of the West’s respect for international law lay barefaced when the UN General Assembly (UNGA)’s Special Political and Decolonization Committee voted on a resolution on Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people.
Prabhash Ranjan, Professor and Vice Dean, Jindal Global Law School, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, Haryana, India.
Aman Kumar, Assistant Professor, IFIM Law School, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India.
The year 2022 shall go down in history as one that posed a fundamental challenge to the international legal order due to Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine. The world — especially the United States (US) and Canada — didn’t leave any stone unturned to remind Russia about its illegal occupation. The United Nations (UN) was repeatedly used to adopt resolutions indicting Moscow.
Western powers are correct in pointing out that Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is illegal because it constitutes an unlawful use of force, not mandated by the UN Charter. Furthermore, Russia’s occupation of Donetsk, Luhansk, Zaporizhzhia, and Kherson — four regions that are an integral part of Ukraine – is also illegal. Russia claims that these four regions have had referendums.
However, the so-called “referenda” were conducted in areas under Russian occupation. Thus, it is unlikely that they constituted a genuine expression of popular will. Furthermore, consequent to the occupation, Russia unilaterally merged these four Ukrainian territories with it. This is illegal because it violates Article 43 of the 1899 Hague Regulation. Russia, being the occupier, has no “sovereignty” but only “authority” over these regions.
But the same western powers turn Nelson’s Eye to another blatant violation of international law, that of Israel’s occupation of Palestinian territory. Israel’s occupation of the West Bank began in 1967 and has deepened over 55 years, notwithstanding an advisory opinion by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and adverse UN Security Council resolutions. The hypocrisy of the West’s respect for international law lay barefaced when the UN General Assembly (UNGA)’s Special Political and Decolonization Committee voted on a resolution on Israeli practices affecting the human rights of the Palestinian people. The resolution is significant as it came against the background of the recent Israeli election won by a coalition of Right-wing parties, with some having strong anti-Palestine sentiments.
Published in: Hindustan Times
To read the full article, please click here.