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Palestinian/ Israeli update 3/22/2016..Palestinian officials have secretly met international criminal court officials in Jordan

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Israeli settlements root cause of rights violations against Palestinians: UN

A senior UN rights official says the continued development of illegal Israeli settlements is the root cause of a broad spectrum of human rights abuses across the occupied Palestinian territories.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Zeid al-Hussein made the remarks in a statement at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) on Tuesday.

He noted that settlements only prolong the occupation and undermine the future of Palestinians.

“The presence and continued development of Israeli settlements lie at the root of a broad spectrum of human rights violations in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem (al-Quds),” al-Hussein said.

Al-Hussein also called on UN member states to end their businesses in illegal Israeli settlements and not to facilitate Israel’s violations of international law.

He urged all states “to ensure that they are not taking actions that either recognize or assist the expansion of settlements or construction of the wall in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem (al-Quds).”

UN urges probe into Israeli killing of Palestinians

Elsewhere in his remarks, the UN rights chief called for an immediate investigation into what he called Israel’s unlawful killings of Palestinians in the occupied territories.

“Some of these responses strongly suggest unlawful killings, including possible extrajudicial executions and willful killings. Prompt, independent, impartial thorough and effective investigations should be carried out into all allegations of excessive use of force,” al-Hussein stated.

Palestinian officials have secretly met the international criminal court officials in Jordan after Israel barred the Hague-based court personnel from entering the occupied territories. During the meeting, Palestinians provided the ICC with documents containing Israeli violations and aggression against Palestinians.

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