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UN rapporteur slams EU support for Israeli aggression on Gaza

Gaza , (The Palestine Information Centre)A United Nations special rapporteur has slammed the European Union’s unwavering support for Israel in its aggression on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, and its double standards regarding Palestine and Ukraine.

Speaking to Middle East Eye, Francesca Albanese, the UN special rapporteur on the Occupied Palestinian Territories, said “Political action is lacking and double standards tarnish the values and the rule of law principle upon which our international order is premised.”

Albanese made the remarks after European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen confirmed the EU’s unwavering support for Israel in recent days, saying that “Israel has the right to defend itself – today and in the days to come. The European Union stands with Israel.”

After von der Leyen’s tweet, Israel has intensified its strikes on Gaza and cut off fuel, water, energy, and food supplies to the coastal strip, which is home to over two million Palestinians and has already been suffering under a 16-year-old Israeli blockade.

Von der Leyen’s recent remarks drew widespread criticism, especially after her previous comments on Russia’s alleged targeting of such utilities.

Last year, Von der Leyen said Russian “attacks against civilian infrastructure, especially electricity, are war crimes.”

“Cutting off men, women, children of water, electricity, and heating with winter coming – these are acts of pure terror,” she said back then.

The UN rapporteur urged Von der Leyen on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, to make the “same declaration” she did against Russia towards the Israeli offensive on Gaza.

“If not, people could think that European institutions do not value the protection of Palestinian children, women and men as much as that of Ukrainians,” said Albanese.

Albanese said it was important to make such a statement because it meant “giving full meaning to the universality of human rights and equality of all human beings, to enable Israelis and Palestinians to live in dignity and freedom.”

“I do not understand the lack of commensurate empathy with the Palestinian people, as well as the lack of accountability for Israel’s protracted occupation and crimes perpetrated for over 56 years,” Albanese said.

While Tel Aviv was backed by its staunch Western allies, the US and the EU, over the past week, the reaction among Latin American leaders was more varied.

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