Palestine’s UN Ambassador Riyad Mansour has called on the UN Security Council to ensure “protection” for Palestinians, who have increasingly come under deadly attacks by Israeli forces and settlers in the occupied West Bank.
Speaking to reporters after a closed-door UNSC meeting on Tuesday, Mansour said it was incumbent on the 15-member body to intervene and elevate “itself to the level of taking steps” amid heightened Israeli violence.
“Protection, protection, protection is what the Palestinian civilian population are asking for,” he added.
“We believe that the Security Council has a responsibility to shoulder, especially with regard to … taking steps to provide protection to the civilian population, especially after the criminal and terrorist act by settlers in Huwara and nearby villages.”
On Sunday night, hundreds of armed Israeli settlers, flanked by soldiers, attacked Palestinian villages near the West Bank town of Huwara and set fire to homes, storefronts and cars.
At least one Palestinian was killed and nearly 400 were wounded in the hours-long rampage, which was denounced by Israeli rights groups Peace Now and B’Tselem as a settler “pogrom” supported by the occupying regime. Arab League holds Israel responsible for deadly settler rampage in West BankThe Arab League holds Israel fully responsible for the deadly settler rampage in the occupied West Bank.
Also in his remarks, Mansour said it would have been helpful for Security Council representatives to visit Huwara so they could “see with their own eyes [and] feel the horror in the minds and hearts of children and mothers and their families.”
Israeli settlers and troops have escalated attacks on Palestinians since late December 2022, when Benjamin Netanyahu returned to power as head of the occupying regime’s most far-right cabinet ever.
Israeli forces often do not prevent settler raids and rarely charge perpetrators of such atrocities.
Palestinian Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh called for “international intervention” against Israeli crimes.
“We hold the occupation authorities fully responsible for these heinous crimes, which reflect a systematic policy practiced by the Israeli government, whose ministers demonstrate their support for those crimes in violation of international laws,” he said in a statement on Monday.