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Arms exports to Israel must stop. Credit: UN Photo/Nektarios Markogiannis

A group of UN experts, Special Rapporteurs, Independent Experts and Working Groups gathered under the aegis of the UN Human Rights Council, warned in a statement yesterday that any arms exports to Israel are likely a violation of international law and must stop immediately. The experts said weapons exports to Israel could be used in Gaza, where there is a “clear risk” that they would be used to commit serious violations of international humanitarian law.

“All States must ‘ensure respect’ for international humanitarian law by parties to an armed conflict, as required by 1949 Geneva Conventions and customary international law,” the experts said. “States must accordingly refrain from transferring any weapon or ammunition—or parts for them—if it is expected, given the facts or past patterns of behavior, that they would be used to violate international law.” The experts added that the transfers of weapons are still “prohibited even if the exporting State does not intend the arms to be used in violation of the law—or does not know with certainty that they would be used in such a way.”

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