(JNS.org) Jacques de Maio, head of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) delegation to Israel and the disputed territories, asserted in a rare interview this week that Israel is not an “apartheid state.”
The ICRC leader detailed the Palestinian Authority’s attempts at political manipulation, including accusations that Israel is an apartheid state that carries out “extrajudicial killings.”
“There is no IDF order to shoot suspects to kill, as political officials tried to convince us,” de Maio told Yedioth Ahronoth. “The Red Cross was very familiar with the regime in South Africa during apartheid…there is no apartheid here [in Israel].”
“There isn’t a regime here that is based on the superiority of one race over another; there is no disenfranchisement of basic human rights based on so-called racial inferiority,” he added.
According to de Maio, the Red Cross has worked with the IDF to clarify “the issue of shooting assailants who carry out terror attacks, and we reached an unequivocal conclusion that there is no IDF order to shoot suspects to kill, as political officials tried to convince us.”
De Maio said that when the ICRC rejected the Palestinians’ accusation of “extrajudicial killings,” there were “immediately those who claimed we were covering up war crimes committed by the IDF, and that we were serving the Zionists.”
The Red Cross leader’s sympathetic comments on Israel come despite the fact that his official title identifies him as head of the “delegation in Israel and the occupied territories,” employing an anti-Israel description for the disputed territories.