[News] 3 Palestinian Civil Society Organizations Send Submission to UN on Israel’s Smear Campaigns and Disinformation

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Wed Mar 3 10:36:03 EST 2021

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  Three Palestinian Civil Society Organisations Send Submission to UN
  Expert on Israel’s Smear Campaigns and Disinformation

03، Mar 2021

On 15 February 2021, Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights 
Association, Al-Haq, Law in the Service of Man, and Al Mezan Center for 
Human Rights sent a joint submission to the United Nations Special 
Rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of Freedom of Opinion and 
Expression, Ms. Irene Khan, in response to a call for input 
<https://alhaq.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=10071401ba4201bc1a4992f68&id=96daf5db52&e=08c14cf485> issued 
ahead of her upcoming annual thematic report on disinformation and 
freedom of opinion and expression, which will be presented to the Human 
Rights Council at its 47th regular session in June 2021.

Mindful of the legal obligations of Israel, the Occupying Power, the 
submission aimed to address and document Israel’s attacks on Palestinian 
civil society organisations and human rights defenders, including the 
systematic smear and disinformation campaigns that, inter alia, violate 
the right to freedom of opinion and expression and ultimately aim to 
silence opposition to its unlawful policies and practises and maintain 
its apartheid regime.

The joint submission highlighted Israel’s recent attacks on Palestinian 
human rights defenders, which included arbitrary arrests, travel bans, 
and residency revocations, as well as attacks on Palestinian human 
rights organisations, including raids. The submission further underlined 
how the Israeli government, through its Ministry of Strategic Affairs 
and in coordination with government-operated non-governmental 
organisations, has been leading a systematic, carefully orchestrated, 
and institutionalised smear and disinformation campaign against 
Palestinian human rights organisations and defenders, in an attempt to 
shrink civil society space, and delegitimise, oppress, and dominate them.

Given Israel’s prevailing culture of impunity, the submission reasserted 
the need to finally address Israel’s apartheid regime as the root cause 
of Israel’s systematic human rights violations, including those 
impacting human rights defenders and civil society organisations. 
Accordingly, the joint submission offered Special Rapporteur Khan the 
following recommendations:

 1. Examine Israel, as Occupying Power, and the manner in which it
    spreads fake news and false information about human rights
    organisations and defenders both online, including on social media
    platforms, and offline, particularly through its Ministry of
    Strategic Affairs and government-affiliated organisations; and
    include the results of such examinations in the Special Rapporteur’s
    annual thematic report to be presented to the Human Rights Council
    at its 47th session in June 2021;
 2. Urge Israel to immediately and unconditionally cease all practices
    and policies intended to harass, intimidate and silence human rights
    defenders and organisations, not only through disinformation
    campaigns, but also through arbitrary detention, torture and other
    ill-treatment, institutionalised hate speech and incitement,
    residency revocation, deportations, and other coercive or punitive
 3. Publicly call for international justice and accountability for
    Israel’s war crimes and crimes against humanity, including its
    apartheid regime, by publicly supporting the recent decision of the
    Pre-Trial Chamber of the ICC,[1]
    <https://alhaq.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=10071401ba4201bc1a4992f68&id=2dbec809a7&e=08c14cf485> and
    urging the Prosecutor to immediately begin, without any further
    delay, a full, thorough, and comprehensive ICC investigation into
    the Situation in the State of Palestine. Specifically call on third
    States to comply with their humanitarian law obligations under
    Article 1 of the Fourth Geneva Convention and Rome Statute
    obligations to fully cooperate with the Office of the Prosecutor of
    the ICC;
 4. Engage with online platforms such as Facebook to ensure that posts
    containing death threats and misinformation about human rights
    defenders are removed and that Facebook and other online platforms
    adhere to their human rights responsibilities; and
 5. Highlight the root causes underpinning Israel’s disinformation
    campaign and quashing of freedom of opinion and expression in the
    OPT, and call for an end to the 13-year land and naval closure of
    the Gaza Strip, an end to the 53-year occupation of the West Bank,
    including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, and an end to the
    72-year apartheid on both sides of the Green Line.

Read the full submission here 


<https://alhaq.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=10071401ba4201bc1a4992f68&id=5d8a88b597&e=08c14cf485> Al-Haq, 
“Landmark Decision of the Pre-Trial Chamber of the International 
Criminal Court Welcomed by Human Rights Organizations, 6 February 2021, 
available at: https://www.alhaq.org/advocacy/17878.html 

/Copyright © 2021 Al-Haq Organization, All rights reserved./
al haq organizaiton

*Our mailing address is:*
Al-Haq Organization
54 Main Street
Ramallah P6008148

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