Politics & Democracy
Text of Mahmoud Abbas's speech to UN General Assembly on Palestinian Statehood
Palestine comes today to the General Assembly because it believes in peace and because its people, as proven in past days, are in desperate need of it. Palestine comes today to this prestigious international forum, representative and protector of international legitimacy, reaffirming our conviction that the international community now stands before the last chance to save the two-State solution.
From the Media
The story of a tree and a barrier: Al-Walaja faces a second uprooting
Abu Wajih, 69, lives with his family of nine in the village of Al Walaja. On 5 September 2011, Abu Wajih arrived on his land to find that the Israeli authorities had confiscated six dunums and had already begun levelling it. Abu Wajih lost about 60 olive trees, 18 almond trees, and eight hawthorn trees since Israel began confiscating his land.
FAQ on Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS)
What is BDS?
BDS stands for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions. On July 9, 2005, one year after the historic Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) which found Israel's Wall built on occupied Palestinian territory to be illegal, an overwhelming majority of Palestinian civil society called upon international civil society organizations and people of conscience all over the world to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel, similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era.
Israel escalates policy of political repression in East Jerusalem
As an organisation dedicated to the promotion and protection of human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), Al-Haq is gravely concerned about Israel's escalation of political repression against Palestinian lawmakers, particularly in East Jerusalem. Between 19 and 24 January four Palestinian MPs and a former Minister were detained by Israeli Occupying Forces. At present, there are 27 Palestinian lawmakers in Israeli administrative detention where they are being held without charges in violation of due process and the presumption of innocence.
Humanitarian Crisis in the Gaza Strip
On the morning of November 2nd, two boats carrying nearly 30 international human rights activists from five countries set sail from Turkish ports to challenge Israel's illegal blockade and siege of the Gaza Strip. Among the passengers is an American, Kitt Kittredge, of Washington State. Dubbed "Freedom Wave to Gaza" this effort follows Freedom Flotilla II which comprised ten ships with civilians from 22 countries who attempted to sail for the Gaza Strip in July of 2011 but were thwarted as a result of Israeli pressure.
Shifting paradigms: Israel's enforcement of the buffer zone in the Gaza Strip
The so-called buffer zone is a military no-go area that extend within the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) along the entire Gaza Strip's border with Israel as well as at sea. The buffer zone allegedly responds to the Occupying Power's legitimate security concerns; yet, Israel's unilateral expansion of this restricted area and its enforcement mechanisms seriously infringe upon the rights of protected persons and cause many civilian casualties.
Politics & Democracy
The Palestine Liberation Organization, the future State of Palestine, and the question of popular representation
A Legal Opinion on The Palestine Liberation Organization, the future State of Palestine, and the question of popular representation.
A Pattern of Abuse Against American Citizens
In coming days, ten ships will take part in a flotilla attempting to break the Israeli blockade of the Gaza Strip. Among the ships will be the U.S.-flagged "Audacity of Hope," carrying 36 U.S. citizens. Last year, the Israeli navy attacked a previous humanitarian flotilla in international waters, killing nine passengers, including one American. Though Israeli state violence against foreign nationals is often portrayed as an aberration, over the past 8 years alone, Israel has killed and/or severely injured a number of American citizens. Included are 10 such examples.
Israeli campaign to avoid accountability for Gaza war crimes must be rejected
Recent Israeli government calls for the UN to retract the 2009 report of its Fact-Finding Mission on the Gaza Conflict are a cynical attempt to avoid accountability for war crimes and deny both Palestinian and Israeli victims of the 2008-2009 conflict the justice and reparations they deserve, Amnesty International said today.
Politics & Democracy
Amnesty International says U.S. Veto of UNSC Resolution Gives "Green Light" to Israel to Expand Illegal Settlements
Amnesty International Friday condemned the United States' veto of a United Nations Security Council resolution reaffirming that Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) are illegal and demanding that Israel cease all settlement activities in the OPT, including East Jerusalem. The other 14 members of the UN Security Council voted in favour of Resolution S/2011/24, which was proposed by Lebanon and co-sponsored by some 120 countries.
Israel: US Veto on Settlements Undermines International Law
The US veto of a proposed United Nations Security Council Resolution calling upon Israel to end illegal policies that promote settlements in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, undermines enforcement of international law, Human Rights Watch said today. The Geneva Conventions, to which Israel is a party, prohibit the transfer of a country's civilian population into territory it occupies.
An Open Letter from Gaza: Two Years after the Massacre, a Demand for Justice
This is a letter from Palestinian civil society institutions in Gaza writing to the world on the 2nd anniversary of Israel's invasion of Gaza codenamed Operation Cast Lead. During Operation Cast Lead, over 1,400 people in Gaza were killed, the majority of them civilians, and hundreds of buildings & institutions destroyed.
Israel/West Bank: Separate and Unequal
Israeli policies in the West Bank harshly discriminate against Palestinian residents, depriving them of basic necessities while providing lavish amenities for Jewish settlements, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today. The report identifies discriminatory practices that have no legitimate security or other justification and calls on Israel, in addition to abiding by its international legal obligation to withdraw the settlements, to end these violations of Palestinians' rights.
Hebron: Israeli Occupation Policies, Palestinian Resistance Strategies
With this paper, we aim to outline the Israeli policies of confiscation and conquest of the city and district of Hebron and, at the same, the strategies of resistance pursued by the local population together with Israeli and international support. We will now consider settlement construction and expansion, focusing on the city of Hebron through use of Frantz Fanon's concept of colonized city.
Israeli Settlers' Violence Report - September and October 2010
The following report highlights a drastic change in Israeli settler attacks against Palestinians, not only because of the increasing number of aggressions but also because of the evolution of the violence itself. One explanation for the violent evolution that took place over the past two months is the end of Israel's ten month partial settlement freeze on 26 September 2010.
Politics & Democracy
Largest Jewish settlements in the West Bank
Since it occupied the West Bank in the 1967 Middle East war, Israel has set up more than 130 settlements in the territory excluding annexed East Jerusalem. They now have more than 300,000 residents.
According to Interior Ministry figures, the majority of Jewish settlers live in eight large settlements which Israel wants to annex in any lasting peace agreement with the Palestinians.
Illegal Israeli settlement plans threaten Palestinian human rights
Amnesty International on Friday urged the Israeli authorities to abandon plans to construct 238 new housing units in Israeli settlements in occupied East Jerusalem. "The Israeli authorities must immediately halt expansion of settlements in East Jerusalem and the rest of the occupied West Bank," said Philip Luther, Amnesty International's Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa. "Not only does the building contravene international law, it also compounds the litany of abuses of the human rights of Palestinians living in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, including their rights to adequate housing and water."
Israel and apartheid
Israel and South Africa are different in many ways. There is ample evidence, however, that Israeli policies meet the broader definition of apartheid by separating and discriminating against Palestinian Arabs, through systems that are institutionalized by laws and decrees. Some of these policies bear resemblance to South Africa during its apartheid era.
FAQ on Settlements
On September 26, 2010, Israel refused to extend a partial settlement freeze, bringing to a halt the most recent round of peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians. In the leadup to the critical deadline and in hopes of avoiding a premature end to the peace talks, world leaders from President Obama to the European Union's Foreign Ministers urged Israel to continue the settlement freeze. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ignored these calls and allowed the partial settlement freeze to expire. The decision was met with mass celebrations by the Israeli settler community across the West Bank.
Children of the gravel
Since the declaration of the easing of the closure of Gaza in July 2010, Israel has allowed about 600 trucks of construction materials into the Gaza Strip, or in other words, about 4% of need. As long as Israel continues to forbid the entry of building materials into the Gaza Strip, the informal gravel industry will continue to flourish and young people will continue to risk this dangerous option to support their families.
Documents & Reports