Human Rights Watch hurts ‘Israel’s right to exist’ with report accusing it of crime of apartheid, minister claims

FILE PHOTO. A protest against the Israeli barrier, in the West Bank village of Bilin. ©REUTERS / Mohamad Torokman

A Human Rights Watch (HRW) report, which said Israel has crossed the threshold and is committing the crimes of apartheid and persecution against Palestinians, was angrily rejected by Israeli officials.

“The purpose of this spurious report is in no way related to human rights, but to an ongoing attempt by HRW to undermine the State of Israel’s right to exist as the nation state of the Jewish people,” Israeli Strategic Affairs Minister Michael Biton said.

The Israeli Foreign Minister branded the claims in the 213-page document “preposterous and false,” and accused the rights group of maintaining “a long-standing anti-Israel agenda.”

The angry reaction came in response to a report titled ‘A Threshold Crossed: Israeli Authorities and the Crimes of Apartheid and Persecution’, which HRW released on Tuesday. It accused Israel of systematically privileging Israeli Jews and violating the rights of Palestinians living both in Israel proper and in the territories that Israel occupied during the 1967 war with Arab states.

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