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Australia to stop referring to East Jerusalem as 'occupied'
Published Thursday 05/06/2014 (updated) 07/06/2014 09:35
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BETHLEHEM (Ma'an) -- PLO official Hanan Ashrawi on Thursday strongly criticized an announcement by the Australian government that it is to stop referring to East Jerusalem as occupied territory.

Attorney-General George Brandis announced Thursday that describing East Jerusalem as occupied "is a term freighted with pejorative implications which is neither appropriate nor useful."

"It should not and will not be the practice of the Australian government to describe areas of negotiation in such judgmental language."

Ashrawi said it is "disgraceful" and "shocking" that on the 47th anniversary of Israel's occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza that Brandis would make such "inflammatory" statements.

"Israel's illegal annexation of East Jerusalem is beyond 'pejorative' and 'inappropriate'; it is a deliberate and egregious violation, not just of international humanitarian law and consensus, but of the basic norms of responsible behavior that governs relations among civilized states."

"Trying to fabricate or distort the law to fit Israel's lawless behavior is shameful and dangerous. Attorney-General Brandis, whether out of ignorance or whether out of blind bias, is trying to render Australia complicit in the Israeli occupation, and is forcing it to become an advocate of international criminal behavior," she concluded.

East Jerusalem was occupied in 1967 and later annexed in a move never recognized by the international community.

On May 21, 1968, the United Nations Security Council reaffirmed that the "acquisition of territory by military conquest is inadmissible."

The resolution stated that "all legislative and administrative measures and actions taken by Israel, including expropriation of land and properties thereon, which tend to change the legal status of Jerusalem are invalid and cannot change that status."
1 ) Goldie / US
05/06/2014 20:19
Well what you do you expect? The European settlers are occupiers of aboriginal land. Thieves are thieves no matter whether you call them Australians or Zionists!

2 ) Tobias / USA
05/06/2014 21:06
Acquisition of another state's "territory by military conquest is inadmissible."
However, the West Bank situation does fit any standard application,
for two reasons:
-1- The territory was neither recognized as Jordan's, Nor Palestine's at the time, so neither has a better claim to the territory than Israel, which also has clear legitimate ancestral (biblical) claims, and
-2- Israel's military conquest was purely defensive, after Egypt, Jordan, Syria, & Lebanon invaded & re-invaded.

3 ) christian palestinian / usa
05/06/2014 22:08
Lets not forget that "Australia" was created in the same racist and violent manner as apartheid israel. It is only natural that Australian criminals (with no principles or honor) would so publicly support racist israeli policies.

There should be a full Arab boycott and embargo of Australia until they evolve and get educated.

4 ) Joe / USA
05/06/2014 22:20
@2) Stop using Biblical legitimate ancestral claims. Modern Israel cannot claim any land back 4000 years ago. If that was the case Israel would have kept the Sinai desert. or at least Mount Sinai where the Torah supposedly was given to Moses while he was is in Egypt, and instead Jews in Israel celebrate that day by going to a Muslim Mosque, what bunch of schmucks. And to top it off, Netanyahu said to the Pope that Jesus was a Jew. The Pope corrected him by saying Jesus was Aramaic. Now

5 ) Abel Magwitch / N.S.Wales
05/06/2014 22:26
Everyone knows the history of Australia, nothing to be proud of there. Particularly the appalling treatment of the aboriginal people.

6 ) Joe / USA
05/06/2014 22:29
Now Israel is using Jesus, and made him a Jew to justify the extremists hatred slogans, and burning of Churches. So as I said lets knock off biblical claims. If Israel was so religiously inclined they would have got their hands on Jerusalem before 67. And as you said Israel conquest was purely defensive, it should have been an offensive to substantiate their claim that God gave them the land. They didn't bother. So they don't need that bad.

7 ) Ali / Jordan
06/06/2014 00:44
The only viable solution is the one state solution with democracy and equality for all people between the Jordan river and the Mediterranean. The Israeli Apartheid has to end.

8 ) Maureen / Australia
06/06/2014 00:58
Unfortunately Australia now has a facist right wing Liberal government in office! However, take note of the unrest and lack of confidence it is causing in Australia. Seems a leadership battle is also heating up within within the Liberal Party. US TV has made a commedy sketch featuring Australian PM Tony Abbott. LOL!

9 ) Ruben / france
06/06/2014 02:21
@2# : "Defensive conquest" did you read what you just wrote? As to the "biblical" claim, it has been demonstrated by many historian that the Ashkenazi jews who make up the majority and ruling class of the settler Zionist state are not even remotely related to the Hebrew people, so here goes your so-called legitimate claims. And what do you make of the indegeneous people's (Palestinians) claim to their own land? Nothing can justify colonialism and ethnic cleansing, Mr Zionist Troll!

10 ) red / USA
06/06/2014 05:13
Very true, "the West Bank situation does fit any standard application"! Boycott Israel & boycott Australia, mate!

11 ) Ali / Amman
06/06/2014 08:57
It's fine. Removing the word does not mean removing the Israeli occupation.

12 ) Kobe / Au
06/06/2014 10:48
Under law the true sovereign of a territory is the legitimate inhabitants of that territory, in this case the Palestinian people. Israel has no claim! Article 2 of the 49th Geneva Convention. “In addition to the provisions which shall be implemented in peacetime, the present Convention shall apply to all cases of declared war or of any other armed conflict which may arise between two or more of the 'High Contracting Parties,' even if the state of war is not recognised.

13 ) Emma / Switserland
06/06/2014 12:33
Tobias, the article talks about East Jerusalem. Thank you.

14 ) joop jansnen / the netherlands
06/06/2014 16:44
Yesterday I wanted to send a parcel to a town in the West Bank, Palestine, a great gift! What amazes me that the Dutch Post Office told me there is no Palestine and West Bank on my list,only Israel! WHAT the f......? send it you morons!

15 ) Joie / USA
06/06/2014 21:34
In a way there are right Jerusalem should be occupy by Israel, at least least Jerusalem.

16 ) Datu Haj Ansari D. Alonto / Philippines
06/06/2014 23:22
"Rascal begets rascal as thieve begets thieve...so on & so forth..."

17 ) michael mazur / Australia
07/06/2014 00:53
SBS nooz coverage of it had the Attorney General, and Hanan Ashrawi, saying the above, but they also had two prominent Australian Jews saying their lines, and smilingly looking the innocent cat having just eaten the pet canary. No coverage at all of the preceding heavy lobbying on the Australian govt to embarrass the rest of us. Vassal Australia, bearing the imprint of the heaviest imperial bum sitting on its face, has lost 114,000 men in their wars, and politicians get fat pensions for treason.

18 ) Irene Faulkes / Australia
07/06/2014 06:12
Australia did not come into being with wars or great violence. My several forbears pioneered, friendly Aboriginals their only companions, only peace. I, a Christian in truth, support Palestinians in my heart. A Jewish General's son, his father being in the Six Day War, announces those in Israel 'Are not descendants of Abraham'. They are of the Khazars, a Turkish/Mongol race. Theby were never given 'The Land' by God. We Christians, U.S.A. also, were fooled for 200 years since Brethren, Darby.

19 ) gabi / australia
07/06/2014 09:37
#5 -"Everyone knows the history of Australia, nothing to be proud of there.Particularly the appalling treatment of the aboriginal people." Not to mention the appalling way we treat asylum seekers, most of whom come from countries we have bombed the shit out of. Then when they come asking for asylum we say "bugger off" Shocking. #8 I really hope you are right Maureen and that the present leader may not be for too much longer. That comedy sketch is a hoot with a lot of LOLing all over the world.

20 ) gabi / australia
07/06/2014 10:28
(contd.) As to our current Attorney-General, who holds the highest law office in the land, who ignores the UN, the ICU and international law, he wouldn't know an international law if it bit him on the bum. What a clown. (Oops, sorry - that is an insult to clowns.)

21 ) Chimo / USA
07/06/2014 13:11
There never was a Palestinian Country populated by arabs who referred to themselves a Palestinians until 1964. Its a term stolen from the jews (just like everything else) The Temple Mount is the holiest place in all Judaism yet the muslims hve been trying to steal that too, lying to the world and saying that the Western Wall is not part of the 2nd temple. The arabs have been trying to steal Jewish history and replace it with lies and b.s. despite all the evidence of centuries of Jewish history

22 ) HonestAbe / usa
07/06/2014 18:31
Touting "Internatinal Law" again! Where was International Law when all Western countries, including USA, did not allow accept Jews trying to escape the Holocaust? Where was International Law in Sebrenca, Rawanda? Where is it in Syria? Why ask Israel to obey your self-serving, anti-Israel view of International Law, when no one else does? Israel's security situation is extreme and the need for defensive land buffers is critical. Israelis must think,where was International Law for South Vietnam?

23 ) Maureen / Australia
07/06/2014 19:08
#21 Guess what Chimo, the Australian treasurer, Joe Hockey is proud of his Palestinian family history (so he says.) His Palestinian father was born in Bethlehem.

24 ) ian / australia
07/06/2014 23:45
#1, #3, #5, #10 Absurd. Australia is a democracy in which ALL citizens have equal rights. It has a British colonial past in which the indigenous people were largely dispossessed. Violence and disease decimated their population through the 18th and 19th centuries. Their descendants, however, are citizens, like descendants of English convicts and the Irish who fled the famine, economic migrants from post-war Europe and Asia and political refugees from Africa and the Middle East granted asylum.

25 ) ian / australia
07/06/2014 23:46
(contd.) They vote, receive assistance when needed and go to the doctor for free. Like all of us. (And, for what it's worth, a previous government apologised formally to Aboriginal Australia for past wrongs.) Yes, politically, we have a throwback, right-wing, Bush-era government (and an embarrassment of a leader) which has come out with this ridiculous hard line on East Jerusalem. But it just makes us look absurd, being to the RIGHT of the US (!), the HOME of blind support for Israel and at odds

26 ) ian / australia
07/06/2014 23:47
(contd.) with UN resolutions and the global consensus. Sucking up to some perceived power base by aping its criminal policies is beyond pathetic. Talking tough to dispossessed Palestinians. Us and Palau. G-d help us. G-d help us. See John Oliver for definitive account of Australian political scene http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3IaKVmkXuk

27 ) ian / australia
07/06/2014 23:50
(contd.) us look ridiculous. Us and Palau. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3IaKVmkXuk

28 ) gabi / australia
08/06/2014 04:01
Chimo - piece of advice. Stop reading hasbara and start reading history. Read, for starters, Herodotus. And look at old, very old maps and see mention of Palestine.Then read some modern stuff, eg. the book by two Israelis, one a historian and the other an archeologist, both Jewish (forget their names, and someone has borrowed my copy so I can't check it) called The Bible Unearthed (or something like that.) Give it a go! Then read Benny Morris to see who stole what from whom. Enjoy reading!

29 ) ian / australia
08/06/2014 08:47
#21 Jesus, Chimo, could you get much more wrong in 500 characters? The region has been known as "Palestine" since Herodotus used the term in the 5th century BC. Romans, Crusaders, Ottomans and the British all called it Palestine as well. If it's "stolen from the Jews" (from "Peleshet", used repeatedly in the Bible) doesn't that indicate it's antiquity? "The Temple Mount" may be "the holiest place in all Judaism" but "Judaism" is a religion not a country and the "Temple Mount" is in Palestine.

30 ) ian / australia
08/06/2014 08:47
(contd.) The Western Wall is clearly a Herodian retaining wall (not actually "part" of the Temple) but it's 1st century for seven courses only. The rest is Ottoman. (Herodian blocks have distinctive chiselled borders which stop halfway.) And I'd be careful about who you accuse of "lies and b.s." because the "evidence of centuries of Jewish history" (like the slavery in Egypt, Exodus, sojourn in the wilderness, revelation on Sinai, conquest of Canaan etc.) was all invented by Levitical scribes wh

31 ) ian / australia
08/06/2014 08:49
(contd.) WROTE the Torah in Babylon centuries AFTER the mythical "events". In 500 BC, Chimo, which is the date for the earliest EVIDENCE of Judaism, people had NO way of knowing what had happened a thousand years (or even centuries) before and the exilic authors improvised freely with a "history" they didn't know when they created their self-aggrandising cosmology with THEMSELVES cast in a ludicrously starring part.

32 ) @ Joe-4 & Ruben-9 / USA
08/06/2014 17:08
-4- The Unrecognized borders of other states, between 1948 & 1967, to legitimize Palestinian claims. The Modern Palestinian Authority (PA) cannot claim any land that far back either, and the PA's only option to become a real sovereign state is to reach an agreement with Israel !! -9- There is No Doubt that 5 Arab states and several Islamic militias were the aggressors, invading Israel with intentions of conquest & genocide. Israel will Not return to the Insecure borders that encouraged them.

33 ) @ Emma-13 / USA
08/06/2014 17:19
- In 1948, "East Jerusalem" changed hands, where the UN Partition Plan (#181), arrogantly claimed it as an "International City", but Jordan (Transjordan then) took it, and as much West Bank lands as possible, by military invasion, while other Arab armies did the same thing, and - In 1967, "East Jerusalem" changed hands again, when 4 Arab states rejected their own 1949 Armistice Agreements, and reinvaded Israel, in another failed attempt to destroy the Jewish state !! - "Thank you".

34 ) Af - yes, that Af / USA
08/06/2014 19:42
Israel only defends itself. That is fact. Jordan doesn't want West Bank & Egypt doesn't want Gaza. This means both belong to Israel. "Palestinians" are a created people by the Muslim Brotherhood and have NOTHING to bargain with. Plus Sisi has Israel's back. Give it up already.

35 ) Robert / US
08/06/2014 21:05
#5 how about the British and them brining people against there will, esp Children from orphanages ?.

36 ) Maureen / Australia
08/06/2014 21:44
# 25 ian Australian Aboriginal rights are still languishing in Australia. Aboriginal people in Australian suburbs enjoy all the rights of Whites but not so in more remote areas of Australia. Take for instance the UN report on Australian indigenous comparison to (below) Third World standards. The mining companies on Australian land, especially uranium mining and the proposed nuclear dump on Aboriginal territory in remote Australia. (Don't forget the disgraceful nuclear tests at Maralinga 1950s)

37 ) ian / australia
09/06/2014 23:59
#5 "Everyone knows the history of Australia, nothing to be proud of there." Nothing? Extending full citizenship and equal rights, incorporating "native title" into law, overturning "terra nullius", criminalising discrimination and a formal apology for past wrongs are part of "the history of Australia" too.

38 ) ian / australia
10/06/2014 00:01
#36 "...Aboriginal rights are still languishing in Australia. Aboriginal people in Australian suburbs enjoy all the rights of Whites but not so in more remote areas of Australia." I disagree, Maureen. Remote Aboriginal communities have their problems. Unemployment, no education, alcohol and porn create dysfunctional nightmare communities. But the problems are social and cultural and largely the failure of the self-appointed Aboriginal leadership. They are NOT the result of lesser RIGHTS for

39 ) ian / australia
10/06/2014 00:01
(contd.) indigenous Australians or anything approaching Apartheid, discrimination or an unwillingness to try to help (even if the "help" is drastic and controversial like the NT intervention).
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