A former senior military general has described the Israeli army as “world champions of occupation,” and described his role as akin to being “commander of occupation”.
Major General Gadi Shamni, the former head of the Israeli army’s Central Command, has spoken out against the Tel Aviv regime as turning occupation into an “art” form.
“We brought the occupation to a level of art. We are the world champions of occupation. I was head of Central Command. The commander of the occupation,” he said in a speech at the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya on Wednesday.
Elsewhere in his remarks, he claimed that the “only acceptable solution” to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict “is a separation agreement from the Palestinians,” because, he said, the “Palestinians will not accept the continuation of the endless Israeli occupation.”
Shamni’s remarks come as Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has censured Israel for turning the occupied territories into an “open-air prison,” saying terrorism could be eliminated from the entire world if the regime’s occupation comes to an end.
Speaking at the European Parliament in Brussels on June 23, Abbas denounced Tel Aviv’s “never-ending provocations” and “fascist policies”, saying even senior Israeli officials sharply criticize the regime’s leadership.
Abbas highlighted three Israeli wars on the blockaded Gaza Strip, which left thousands of people dead, and said the regime had imprisoned over a million Palestinians since 1967.
Israel “has turned our country into an open-air prison,” said Abbas, calling on EU states to help bring an end to the Israeli occupation as a step towards the elimination of global terrorism and extremism.
“Once the occupation ends, terrorism will disappear, there will be no more terrorism in the Middle East, or anywhere else in the world,” the Palestinian president said.
Abbas further decried the global community for the deafening silence on Israeli crimes against Palestinians.
The occupied territories have witnessed new tensions ever since the Israeli forces introduced restrictions on the entry of Palestinian worshipers into the al-Aqsa Mosque compound in East Jerusalem al-Quds in August 2015.
At least 236 Palestinians have lost their lives at the hands of Israeli forces in the tensions since the beginning of last October.