Irish lawmaker says Israel held accountable for murder
"Israel needs to be answerable for the crimes that they committed, and not only in the last two weeks, for the last 75 years. They have to face accountability because Israelis literally get away with murder," Gino Kenny, who is a member of People Before Profit, said during an interview Turkey's Anadolu Agency.
"Now, we all know that this has gone on for decades, annexation and occupation. So, it's welcomed that the government has stated that this is a policy of Israel," Kenny said, referring to Ireland's declaration earlier this week that Israel is engaged in "de facto annexation" in Palestinian territories.
Kenny's comments follow the end of a brutal campaign of violence by Israel earlier this month, in which at least 288 Palestinians, including 67 children, were killed in air strikes on Gaza.
This happened in Ramallah today, a wonderful Palestinian city in the central West Bank located 10 km north of Jerusalem. I cried watching this 🥲 Ireland 🇮🇪 says thank you #Ramallah 🇵🇸🇵🇸🙏🙏 #Palestine pic.twitter.com/uBRShtBWAu— Frances Black (@frances_black) May 27, 2021
"Obviously, the Palestinian issue has always been very close to the heart to most our people; we understand what they're going through when we, on a daily and a weekly basis, we see kind of the brutality," the lawmaker said.
"Palestinians have every right to resist the occupation. This is nothing new." He went on to call the European Union "toothless and spineless cowards".
Ireland has a strong relationship with Palestine, and it is one of the few countries in the European Union to unequivocally condemn Israel’s actions.
Earlier this week the Irish Government passed the Sinn Féin motion and condemned the "ongoing forced displacement of Palestinian communities in the occupied Palestinian territory".
Ireland became the first EU member state to call Israel’s action in Palestine annexation by passing the motion.
In response, on Thursday an Irish flag was raised above Ramallah City Hall in the West Bank, and Ireland’s national anthem was played in a show of supper and appreciation.
Ireland's support for Palestinians goes back decades and stems from a shared experience of occupation – British occupation on the part of the Irish.
The country's traumatic civil war, precipitated by Britain and which led to six northern counties being ruled by the British crown, to many Irish people lies parallel to the Palestinian struggle.