The European Union of Jewish Students is shocked but sadly not surprised by the report of Amnesty International, released today, which accuses Israel of being an Apartheid state.
The report, entitled “Israel’s Apartheid Against Palestinians” bears the intention of demonising and delegitimising the world’s only Jewish state. Rather than providing productive and feasible solutions to the mutually-damaging conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, it is staunchly one-sided and is indicative of its anti-Israel bias.
Certainly, inequalities are present within Israel, so as in every democratic state. It is worth noting that Israel’s Arab communities are represented across Israeli society, including in the judicial system, in the Israeli national sporting apparatus and also in government. Therefore, the accusation of Israel being a racist entity is not only false but should be viewed as an attempt by Amnesty International to hold Israel to a higher standard than it would for any other democratic state.
EUJS has never backed down when it comes to constructive criticism of the policies of the Israeli government. Yet, the content of this report is not conducive to peace or, indeed, the universal application of human rights and so merely reads as an imbalanced list of accusations against the world’s only Jewish state. In accordance with the IHRA Working Definition of Antisemitism, such an application of double standards is deemed antisemitic.
In the report, the living conditions of Palestinians are rightfully discussed at length. However, the report’s failings to condemn some of the fundamental reasons for this, including the absence of democracy in the West Bank and Gaza, and the continued control by terrorist organisation, Hamas, in Gaza, only serves to discredit the report as a whole.
Ultimately, the content of this report will not improve the living conditions of the Palestinian population. It will, in fact, fuel antisemitism around the world. We, thus, call on Amnesty International to take its mission seriously and stand up for justice, freedom and truth.
Most importantly, EUJS reaffirms its wishes for peace in the Middle-East, its commitment to democracy and its support to the two-state solution. (see EUJS Policy – Two State Solution )