This is the News in Brief from the United Nations.
UN rights office calls for new peace efforts in Occupied Palestinian Territory
The UN rights office, OHCHR, appealed on Tuesday for “a redoubling of efforts to restore calm” on Tuesday in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, after airstrikes and days of clashes between protesters and Israeli security forces.
The ongoing violence marks a dramatic escalation of tensions linked to the potential eviction of Palestinian families from East Jerusalem.
UN Secretary-General António Guterres has expressed his deep concern at the situation, while the Security Council held an emergency meeting on Monday.
In Geneva, UN rights office spokesperson Rupert Colville cited reports that more than 900 Palestinians were injured between 7 and 10 May in East Jerusalem, and over 200 in the West Bank, “most by Israeli security forces”.
He also noted that Palestinian armed groups had also launched “some 250 rockets towards Israel in the past 24 hours” with at least 17 Israeli civilians reportedly injured.
This use of indiscriminate weapons “is strictly prohibited under international humanitarian law and must stop immediately”, the OHCHR official said.
Airstrikes had been carried out in Gaza by Israeli Defense Forces, Mr Colville continued, citing reports that 24 Palestinians had been killed, including nine children and one woman.
“Israel must respect international humanitarian law, in particular the cardinal principles on the conduct of hostilities, namely distinction, proportionality and precautions. Any attack, including airstrikes, should be directed solely at military objectives and all feasible precautions must be taken to avoid civilian deaths and injury and damage to civilian objects.”
Genocide committed agains Yazidis and Shia military cadets: UN probe
The killing of thousands of Yazidi people in Iraq by ISIL extremists was genocide, the Security Council has heard.
Delivering its findings on Monday, the UN team investigating ISIL atrocities said that it had established “clear and convincing evidence” of the crime against the religious minority in 2014.
At that time, the terror group attacked, enslaved and killed members of the Yazidi community in Sinjar, northern Iraq, forcibly displacing around half a million of them.
One of the survivors, Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nadia Murad, urged the Security Council to refer the matter to the International Criminal Court, “to address the universal magnitude of ISIL crimes against humanity”.
“Evidence has been found, but we are still searching for the political will to prosecute. It is time for the international community to do more than listen. It is time to act. If world leaders have the political will to act on this evidence, then justice is surely within reach. ISIS's genocide will not come to an end until all Yazidis can lead a life of dignity in their homeland.”
The UN team behind the Yazidi probe told the Security Council that the mass killing of unarmed cadets and military staff at Tikrit Air Academy in Iraq in June 2014 was also an act of genocide.
An ISIL propaganda video showed the cadets, who were mainly Shia Muslims, being led away and shot.
This was evidence of the crime of direct and public incitement to commit genocide, according to Karim Khan, Special Adviser and Head of the UN team, known as UNITAD.
100 days into Myanmar coup, repression shows no sign of letting up
One hundred days since the Myanmar military seized power, the “brutal” repression of protesters has continued, despite all international efforts to end the violence, the UN rights office said on Tuesday.
Credible reports indicate that at least 782 people have been killed after security forces used “unnecessary, disproportionate and lethal force” since 1 February, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) said.
Spokesperson Rupert Colville urged greater international involvement to prevent the human rights situation there from deteriorating further – in particular the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
The agreement it had secured from the Myanmar military to de-escalate tensions from Myanmar’s military leaders had come to nothing, Mr Colville noted, before warning about the disturbing and illegal detention tactics now being used to capture opponents of the coup:
“We’ve certainly noticed what appears to be an intensifying trend of military authorities taking family members of people they want…to force the people they want to hand themselves in… Collective punishment which is completely unacceptable and illegal.”
There are daily raids on private homes and offices and more than 3,740 people are in detention, Mr. Colville said, adding that military tribunals and courts martial have been established in several townships in which martial law had been declared.
Daniel Johnson, UN News.