Oct. 24 (UPI) -- A U.N. human rights investigator has called on the international community to intervene in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, saying basic human rights are being violated and property is being destroyed on a major scale.
Israel claimed ownership of the West Bank and Gaza Strip following the 1967 Six Day War, and named the "complete and unified" city of Jerusalem the capital 13 years later.
The United Nations has cited multiple violations of international rights, widespread unemployment and food insecurity.
"Israel has occupied the Palestinian territory for more than 52 years, the longest belligerent occupation in the modern world," special U.N. Palestinian rapporteur Michael Lynk told the U.N. General Assembly Wednesday. "The status quo of Israel's 'occu-annexation' is endlessly sustainable without decisive international intervention because of the grossly asymmetrical balance of power on the ground."
He also declared the Israeli occupation a "bitter illustration of the absence of international accountability," and called for a global ban on certain Israeli-made products.
The Gaza blockade prevents Palestinians from traveling via land, sea or air -- a tactic Lynk called "a denial of basic human rights" that amounts to "collective punishment."
Lynk also condemned Israel's live-fire responses to the Great March of Return protests this year, which have so far killed more than 200 Palestinians and injured more than 33,000. Further, he said more frequent Israeli raids in the West Bank have led to mass arrests and arbitrary detentions.
In East Jerusalem, Israel has so far toppled more than 100 Palestinian settlements to make way for Israeli housing. More than 200 Palestinians have been displaced.
The White House has promised a Middle East peace plan for months, but has not yet made it public -- despite promises it would be unveiled after Israeli elections last month. Many Palestinians have already dismissed the U.S. plan, expecting it to unfairly benefit Israel.