Since IHL applies to the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), Israel, as the occupying power, has legal obligations towards the Palestinian civilians, protected under IHL. These IHL obligations include positive actions as well as limitations on the use of power over the occupied population.
Read more about the obligations of Israel
Many Israeli policies are justified by Israel based on security needs – what is the scope of military necessity in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt)?
International Humanitarian Law (IHL) provides the occupying power with special authorities over the occupied territory and its residents compared with the relationship between a government and its citizens.
Read more about the scope of military necessity in the occupied Palestinian territory
How do the Oslo Agreements and the establishment of the Palestinian Authority affect Israel's responsibility under international humanitarian law (IHL)?
In September 1993, the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), headed by Yasser Arafat, signed the Declaration of Principles (DOP) on Interim Self-Government Arrangements with Israel. The Declaration formally initiated the Oslo peace negotiations which culminated in what is called the Oslo Agreements, a series of agreements signed in 1994-1995.
Read more about the Oslo Agreements and the establishment of the Palestinian Authority
What is the scope of Israel’s right to self-defence against Palestinians inside the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt)?
Articles 2(4) and 51 of the UN Charter provide the basic framework for the legal use of force by states and order states to refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state.
As specified in the International Court of Justice Advisory Opinion on the Wall from 2004, Israel cannot claim self-defence under article 51 of the UN Charter against an armed attack that does not come from another state, but rather from territory under its own control. It can however, claim a state of necessity. Read more about the ICJ Advisory Opionion about the Wall
Read more about the the scope of Israel’s right to self-defence
Obligations of the Palestinian Authority
Does the palestinian Authority have any obligations under IHL?
The Palestinian Authority (PA) is not a government of a sovereign, recognized state. It cannot be a state-party to the different conventions that compose international humanitarian law (IHL). Therefore the main channel through which IHL applies to the PA is through individual criminal responsibility set out in international law, as in the case of grave breaches etc.
Read more about the obligations of the Palestinian Authority
Do Palestinians have the right to resist the occupation with arms?
Palestinians are people under occupation who have the right to self-determination under international law. It is illegal to denhy them this right and they have a right to resist occupation by non-violent means.However, the right to an armed struggle for self-determination is more contrversial.
Read more about the right to armed struggle for self-determination