On the International Day for the World’s Indigenous Peoples, we celebrate the contributions of indigenous peoples to the diversity and richness of civilizations and cultures and indeed to our common heritage. It is also a day where we take stock of the many achievements in the recognition and realisation of their rights and identify the actions that the world community still needs to take, so that human rights are universally applied without any discrimination.
The rescue of some 800 White Helmets and their families from Syria is an important humanitarian gesture. Their lives had been at imminent risk following the recent escalation of violence in south west Syria. The White Helmets, also known as Syria Civil Defence, are a Syrian volunteer organisation dedicated to saving, protecting and helping civilians during the Syrian conflict.
On the occasion of the Day of International Criminal Justice the European Union reaffirms its commitment to the fight against impunity for the most serious crimes and violations of international humanitarian law.
The Israeli decision to close the Kerem Shalom crossing point, except for humanitarian supplies, and to restrict the fishing zone for Palestinians risks further aggravating the already dire economic situation in Gaza.
The EU expects Israel to reverse these decisions.
At the same time, Hamas and other actors in Gaza must cease and refrain from violent actions and provocations against Israel, including the launching of incendiary kites and balloons with the aim to damage Israeli property and assets.