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PLO: Jerusalem's Palestinian identity will outlive Israel's colonial occupation

Feb. 1, 2019 10:58 A.M. (Updated: Feb. 1, 2019 11:54 A.M.)
RAMALLAH (Ma'an) -- Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee Member, Hanan Ashrawi, condemned the Israeli Public Security Minister, Gilad Erdan, signing an order to extend the closure of the Orient House as well as several other Palestinian institutions in occupied East Jerusalem, on Thursday.

Erdan's decision also included the closure of East Jerusalem Chamber of Commerce, the Higher Council for the Arab Tourism Industry and the Center for Palestinian Studies.

Ashrawi said, in a statement, that “This provocative decision adds to the suffering and isolation, imposed by Israel on the Palestinian population in Jerusalem as part of its colonial policy to displace and replace the Palestinian people with all means possible, including the expansion of the illegal settlement regime. It is also a continuation of Israel's illegal cultural, economic and political persecution of the Palestinian people in the capital, Jerusalem."

"On behalf of the PLO, I reaffirm the Palestinian people's unequivocal rejection of Israel's illegal annexation of East Jerusalem. Further, Israel has no sovereign rights in our occupied capital, Jerusalem, as repeatedly affirmed by the United Nations Security Council."

Ashrawi added that Israel’s decision comes in the context of partnership between the Israeli right-wing extremist coalition and the United States' Trump administration, "whose objective is to irresponsibly destroy all chances for the attainment of peace. The illegal and unilateral decision of the US administration to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel continues to embolden and encourage Israel to escalate its violations of Palestinian national and human rights. This US-Israeli partnership is allowing Israel to be a shameless serial violator of international law while undeservedly enjoying immunity from international accountability."

"Jerusalem’s Palestinian identity will outlive Israel's colonial occupation and its illegal action. Palestinians are deeply rooted in the City and are determined to protect their capital and its cultural heritage."

Ashrawi called upon the international community to intervene to hold Israel accountable for its unlawful actions; "I call on all states to stand up to this offensive affront to international law and defend the integrity of the rules-based international order."

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