[It is in Australia’s interest] that the brutal decades-long Israeli military occupation be brought to an end and that Palestinians have their own state at long last.
Ms PARKE (Fremantle) (13:45): This week John Salisbury arrived at Parliament House, completing his 10-day walk from Sydney, to present parliamentarians with a petition signed by more than 1,000 people he met along the way that calls on Australia to join the majority of the world in recognising the state of Palestine. This comes at a time when violence has intensified in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories, as Israel continues to violate international law by building settlements in East Jerusalem and the West Bank, and tensions rise over the prevention of Palestinians praying at the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, and right-wing Israelis visiting that compound.
Eight Israelis and at least 37 Palestinians have been killed so far this month, the disproportionate casualty numbers reflecting the power imbalance between the parties. While much of the Western media has focused on the Israeli victims, less attention has been paid to the more numerous Palestinian victims.
As Middle East commentator Lamis Andoni has written this week in Al Jazeera:
In the name of ‘peace’, Israel continues to wage a daily war against the Palestinians—restricting their movement, demolishing their homes, displacing families, assassinating Palestinians and bombing towns and cities when it sees fit.
It is in the interests of Israelis, Palestinians and the global community, including Australia, that the brutal decades-long Israeli military occupation be brought to an end and that Palestinians have their own state at long last. Given the discussions taking place today regarding the issue of radicalisation, I suggest that ending this longstanding injustice would be one way to reduce recruitment to extremist causes.