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UN special rapporteur calls for imposing sanctions on Israel to force end to Rafah operation

Francesca Albanese has history of anti-Israel and antisemitic comments

Francesca Albanese, UN special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories, attends a side event during the Human Rights Council at the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, March 26, 2024. (Photo: REUTERS/Denis Balibouse)

UN Special Rapporteur Francesca Albanese on Saturday called for imposing sanctions on Israel and advocated for international pressure to halt attacks in Rafah, saying, “Israel will not stop this madness until we make it stop.” 

In a message posted to social media, Albanese called for imposing sanctions, arms embargoes and the suspension of diplomatic relations. 

“Be sure: Israel will not stop this madness until WE make it stop. Member states must impose #sanctions, arms embargo and suspend diplo/political relations with Israel till it ceases its assault,” the UN rapporteur posted to her 𝕏 account. 

Albanese quoted a post from the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), which claimed that the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordered Israel to “immediately halt its military offensive.” 

PCHR also said the “International community must ensure Israel’s compliance with all provisional measures orders.” 

Albanese’s post came after Israel stated the IDF is already acting in compliance with the order issued by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Friday. 

Israel’s Foreign Ministry and National Security Council issued a statement and noted the language used in the ICJ order.

“Israel has not and will not conduct military actions in the Rafah area which may inflict on the Palestinian civilian population in Gaza conditions of life that could bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.”

Israel confirmed it is adhering to the interpretation of the order supported by four ICJ judges, including Court Vice President Julia Sebutinde, who warned against misinterpreting the ICJ ruling as prohibiting Israel from conducting its military operations in Rafah.

However, many pro-Palestinian groups have interpreted the order to say the IDF must cease its operations in Rafah. 

Albanese, an Italian international lawyer, has a long history of criticizing Israel and has faced multiple accusations of antisemitism.

In February, she posted a response to French President Emmanuel Macron, who had called the Oct. 7 attacks “the worst antisemitic massacre of our century.” Albanese claimed, “The victims of 7/10 were killed not because of their Judaism, but in response to Israel’s oppression.” 

In addition, she has accused the United States and Europe of being controlled by Jewish interests and speaking of “Israel’s greed.” 

In her post about the ICJ ruling, Albanese wrote: “Let's be clear. As the ICJ orders Israel to stop its offensive in Rafah, Israel intensifies its attacks on it,” she posted.

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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