YOUSEF N. ZEIDAN, United Nations Permanent Observer of Palestine, said there had been little progress, if any, towards achieving children’s rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, where Palestinian children continued to suffer from the occupation’s impact.  In addition to killing those children, the occupying forces had also illegally imprisoned and detained hundreds of children, seized and photographed them in a “mapping exercise”, and targeted and attacked homes, schools, hospitals and places of worship.

In the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, home demolitions and evictions continued to render Palestinian children homeless.  Roads leading to schools continued to be destroyed, while schools were also being given demolition orders.  Children were repeatedly traumatized, never knowing when or if their home or school would be next.

Palestinian children living in the occupied Gaza Strip suffered from the same hardships, but they also had to endure the harsh and cruel ramifications of Israel’s illegal blockade, he said.  Schools that were callously destroyed in 2008-2009 remained in rubble, while the international community’s reconstruction efforts were intentionally delayed by Israel.  The international community must hold the Israeli occupying forces that committed crimes against Palestinian children accountable and bring them to justice.  Moreover, reports, including by the United Nations, had documented the recent rise in lethal and violent attacks by settlers against Palestinians, including children, despite the responsibility of the occupying Power for the presence of settlers and their acts of lawlessness.

YOUSEF N. ZEIDAN, United Nations Permanent Observer of Palestine, has appealed for immediate and decisive action to bring Israel, the occupying Power, into compliance with international law, including its obligation under the Fourth Geneva Convention and relevant United Nations resolutions.

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