Israel rejects Francesca Albanese, clash with UN envoy: what happens

Israel has decided to ban Francesca Albanese from entering the country, United Nations special rapporteur on human rights violations committed in the occupied Palestinian territories. In a note, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of the Interior defined Albanese’s statements as “outrageous”, according to which the October 7 attack “was a reaction to Israeli oppression”.

“The time of Jewish silence is over. If the United Nations wants to become a relevant body again, its leader Antonio Guterres must publicly disavow the anti-Semitic words of their ‘special envoy’ Francesca Albanese and immediately remove her from her post. Barring her from entering Israel will serve as a reminder of the atrocities committed by Hamas, including the ruthless attack on innocents,” Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz wrote in X.

Albanese’s reply

For two years Israel has denied me from doing my job as requested by the UN by not facilitating my entry into the Occupied Palestinian Territories. And he has been doing this to all the special rapporteurs for 17 years, even to 3 of my predecessors”, the UN rapporteur, an expert in international law, tells Adnkronos, explaining that “the statements in outrageous quotation marks consist in the fact that I responded to what the French president said was the largest anti-Semitic attack since World War II.”

Claiming to have “condemned Hamas’ crimes against Israeli civilians from the first moment”, Albanese underlines that he “firmly disputes that the origin/main cause of the crimes committed against Israeli civilians is anti-Semitism: this is the assertion that Israel considers ‘outrageous’.” This is, he clarifies, “a very serious and dangerous semantic manipulation” by Israel, which “wants to divert attention” from what is happening in Gaza, but thus “also diverts attention from the seriousness of the crimes that Hamas has committed” .

The rapporteur then reiterates the request that Israel, “as a member of the United Nations, conforms to the values ​​of the organization, respects international law and conducts its action as an occupying power in compliance with humanitarian law”. “The truth is that, as UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on 7 October, it didn’t come from nowhere – recalls Albanese – It is important to recognize that the Hamas attacks did not happen “in a vacuum”. The Palestinian people have been subjected to 56 years of suffocating oppression, the Palestinians have seen their land slowly devoured by settlements and plagued by violence, their economy suffocated, their people displaced and their homes demolished, their hopes for a political solution to their situation have vanished.” “But the complaints of the Palestinian people cannot justify Hamas’ atrocious attacks. And those atrocious attacks cannot justify the collective punishment of the Palestinian people”, concludes the rapporteur, quoting Guterres again, “with which I fully agree”.

According to Albenese “it is in the context of Israeli oppression of the Palestinian peopleof 56 years of illegal occupation by a regime of violent apartheid that the crimes committed by Hamas on October 7 must be read and judged“. “The rest – he accuses – is a way to divert attention from what is happening in Gaza, especially since October 7: around 30,000 deaths which are not newsworthy in the West (70% women and children), 10 thousand still under the rubble, around 70 thousand injured, 2 million displaceddaily and incessant massacres in spite of the precautionary measures imposed by the International Court of Justice which recognized the risk of genocide committed by Israel”.

“Instead of intervening on this very serious reality, as per obligations under the Genocide Convention, influential states such as Italy continue to support Israel – Albanese denounces – This could have legal repercussions for Italy too”.

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