Israel, Palestine, Australia and the Law of Occupation

4 February 2014

Professor Ben Saul
Professor Ben Saul

Australia's new position on Israel's settlements in Palestine contradicts almost 50 years of international consensus in the United Nations General Assembly, the Security Council and the International Court of Justice, writes Professor Ben Saul.

In an article for The Conversation, he writes, "Last week, Australia's foreign minister Julie Bishop asked to see which international law declared Israel's settlements in Palestine illegal.

"During her interview while in Israel, Bishop also claimed that deeming the settlements a war crime 'is unlikely to engender a negotiated solution'.

"The Australian government has become an apologist for Israeli war crimes and a wrecker of sacred international humanitarian law principles.

"There is no credible legal basis at all for the view that the settlements are legal, unless the self-serving legal fantasies of Israel and its Zionist supporters are naively accepted.

"The government's legal advisers would never have told the foreign minister that the settlements are legal.

"They are too good to say that."

View the entire article - Settlements illegal under what law? Take your pick, minister - The Conversation

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