World News

UN Rapporteur Mary Lawlor Decries Arms Sales to Israel as ‘War on Human Rights’

Mary Lawlor calls for immediate cessation of arms transfers amid escalating Gaza crisis, denouncing disproportionate use of force.

In a scathing critique of international arms sales practices, UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights Defenders, Mary Lawlor, has asserted that there exists no moral justification for continued arms sales to Israel. Lawlor’s remarks come in the wake of escalating violence and a worsening humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip, where the toll of Palestinian civilian casualties continues to mount.

Mary Lawlor condemned the ongoing arms sales to Israel, citing the indiscriminate use of these weapons against Palestinians, particularly in Gaza. According to Lawlor, the scale of Palestinian civilian deaths, which has reached nearly 32,000 since October 7th last year, underscores the urgency of halting arms transfers to Israel.

“The principle of the universality of human rights demands that states cease arms sales to Israel,” Lawlor asserted, highlighting the disproportionate use of force by Israeli authorities in response to perceived threats. She pointed out that claims of self-defense by Israel have been invalidated by the evident disproportionality of their response.

Lawlor underscored the importance of proportionality in conflict, as outlined in international law, stressing that ideological arguments for continuing arms sales only serve to prioritize Israeli lives over Palestinian ones. She criticized Western countries such as the US, the UK, Germany, France, and Canada for their continued support of Israel through arms sales, despite their professed commitments to human rights.

The UN rapporteur drew attention to the plight of human rights defenders, journalists, and healthcare workers in Gaza, who have faced targeted violence amid the ongoing conflict. She highlighted the disproportionate impact on women and children, who account for a staggering 72% of Palestinian deaths in Gaza. Lawlor also lamented the deaths of journalists, noting that over 122 media workers have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza.

Lawlor pointed to the hypocrisy of countries that claim to uphold a rules-based international order while simultaneously arming Israel, perpetuating a cycle of violence and human rights abuses. She warned that the international human rights architecture is “creaking under the weight of this hypocrisy,” emphasizing that above all, the situation amounts to a “war on human rights.”

The grim statistics from Gaza paint a dire picture: nearly 32,000 Palestinians killed, mostly women and children, and nearly 74,200 injured since the outbreak of the conflict. Lawlor’s impassioned plea for an end to arms sales to Israel serves as a stark reminder of the urgent need for international action to halt the violence and address the root causes of the crisis.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button