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US support encourages Israel to continue atrocities in Palestine: Activist

Mourners attend the funeral of fourteen Palestinians killed by Israelis troops, a day after Israel handed over the bodies of twenty-three Palestinians to their families, on January 2, 2016, at the al-Hussein mosque in the West Bank city of al-Khalil (Hebron). (AFP Photo)

Press TV has interviewed Kamel Hawwash, vice chair of Palestine Solidarity Campaign in Birmingham, to discuss the recent clashes between Israeli troops and Palestinians in the occupied West Bank.

The following is a rough transcription of the interview.

Press TV: Mr. Hawwash welcome to the program. Talk to us about the recent spike in violence in the occupied territories since the beginning of October.

Hawwash: Yes, the violence started back in October, but of course Israeli violence, has been going on for years, for 67 years, ever since Israel was created on our homeland against our will. But the most recent violence was really born out of frustration by Palestinians that there was no hope looking to the future. There is no prospect over just peace and there are also settlers desecrating al-Aqsa Mosque on a daily basis, hoards of them going in under protection of the Israeli police violating this holy sanctuary, which is a Muslim holy sanctuary, and there was a really heavy-handed approach to the Old city in Jerusalem.

So this is born out of frustration and finally there is nothing on the horizon for the Palestinians. The economic situation is terrible and individuals feel they want to really hit out and, unfortunately, as you said, 145 have already lost their lives.      

Press TV: Let’s focus on the recent wave of alleged stabbing attacks in the occupied Palestinian territories. Some observers of the situation, analysts and even many Palestinians believe that these stabbing attacks and the subsequent killings of Palestinians are being used as just another ploy by the Israelis to carry out attacks against Palestinians and in their own way justify this unrelenting aggression against the people of Palestine.  

Hawwash: Yes, I mean the reality is Israel does not need an excuse to do what it does because it acts with complete impunity. The United Nations, the body that had a big hand in the creation of Israel, does not do anything to stop it. The United Nations special rapporteur on human rights [Makarim Wibisono] resigned because he said he was not allowed to gain access to understand how Palestinians live, to report on that and to see the human rights violations.

So Israel basically, because of the protection from the West especially the United States, feels that it can do absolutely anything it wants to. And it will introduce policies such as on the spot assassinations of Palestinians who may have carried out an attack, but who pose no threat [and] who would be shot and basically killed. And also even after their death, they withhold their bodies, causing even greater pain to their families and I understand the pain the Israeli family feel, but causing greater pain to the families of these Palestinians. So it is all very much about pressing the Palestinians, breaking their will, but the Israelis will not succeed.  


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