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“That Palestinians are being forced to wait in spite of Israel’s own rapid roll-out of the vaccine and in spite of its responsibilities as an occupying power under international law speaks volumes about the value placed on Palestinian lives. In this, Israel is in breach of a number of Geneva Convention articles: Article 55 of the Fourth Geneva Convention explicitly states that the occupying power has the ‘obligation to ensure, to the fullest extent of the means available to it, the food and medical supplies of the population’; Article 56 states the occupying power has ‘the duty of ensuring and maintaining […] public health and hygiene in the occupied territory.’

In addition, Article 47 states that ‘protected persons who are in occupied territory shall not be deprived, in any case or in any manner whatsoever, of the benefits of the present Convention’ as a result of any agreement between occupying power and occupied territory. This negates any reference to the Oslo Accords, which Israel has attempted to cite as justification for not vaccinating Palestinians.”

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