"The boundaries of Zionist aspiration include Southern Lebanon, Southern Syria, today's Jordan, all of Cis-Jordan (The West Bank) and the Sinai."
That every Palestinian has a legitimate, individual right to return to his or her original home and to absolute restitution of his or her property.
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In a comment to the Associated Press on May 22, 2000, Israeli Deputy Defense Minister Ephraim Sneh inadvertently acknowledged the inviolable right of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes.
Referring to the situation of members of Israel's proxy militia, the South Lebanese Army, who are not technically refugees, but rather fugitives from justice, Sneh declared that Israel is prepared to offer political asylum to militiamen and their families "because it's very cruel to turn someone into a refugee." (Italics ours.)
The Council for Palestinian Restitution and Repatriation (CPRR) welcomes Mr. Sneh's acknowledgement of the illegality and immorality of turning people into refugees. CPRR notes, however, that the real refugees who should weigh on the conscience of Mr. Sneh and the entire Israeli body politic are not the mercenaries of the SLA, (many of whom should be tried for war crimes under the Geneva Conventions, and are thus fleeing to Israel to avoid punishment by the Lebanese Government), but rather, the millions of Palestinian refugees unjustly divested of their lands, homes, businesses, and livelihoods by Israel in 1948.
CPRR deplores Israel's readiness to settle SLA members and their families in Israel while simultaneously refusing the right of return and restitution to Palestinian refugees who were expelled, often at gunpoint, from their homes in 1948, and whose lands and property Israel forcibly and illegally expropriated in the late 1940s and early 1950s. Despite numerous UN resolutions, nearly four million Palestinians have been living as refugees in inhumane conditions for the last 52 years.
CPRR calls on the entire Israeli Government to reflect seriously on Mr. Sneh's observation that "it is very cruel to turn someone into a refugee," and to apply the moral and legal principles implicit in this truthful statement to actual refugees: the Palestinians of 1948, not the war criminals of 2000. At the very least, CPRR demands to know why the Israeli Government does not think it was "very cruel" to turn hundreds of thousands of Palestinians into refugees in 1948.