[News] Palestinian Civil Society Organisations Call on International Community to Intervene to Protect Against Israeli Attacks

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Mon Oct 25 10:30:53 EDT 2021

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  *Palestinian Civil Society Organisations Host Press Conference at
  Al-Haq, Calls on International Community to Intervene to Protect
  Against Israeli Attacks*

Date: 24 October 2021

On 23 October 2021, Palestinian civil society organizations, hosted a 
joint press conference 
<https://alhaq.us2.list-manage.com/track/click?u=10071401ba4201bc1a4992f68&id=2a931f81c3&e=08c14cf485> at 
Al-Haq Center for Applied International Law in Ramallah. The press 
conference addressed the sharp escalation in Israel’s widespread and 
systematic attacks and smear campaigns against Palestinian human rights 
defenders and civil society organizations culminating in their 
unprecedented designation as “terrorist organizations,” under Israel’s 
domestic Anti-Terrorism Law of 2016. The targeted organisations are: 
Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, Al-Haq Law in 
the Service of Man (Al-Haq), Bisan Center for Research and Development, 
Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCI-P), the Union of 
Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC), and the Union of Palestinian 
Women’s Committees (UPWC).

*General Director of Al-Haq, Shawan Jabarin*, explained that the 
designation was unexpected and took the human rights organisations by 
surprise. “We had not been notified earlier in this regard, we knew from 
the media, just like you. The Jerusalem Post announced this designation 
one hour prior to the official announcement by the Defense Ministry on 
its page.” Mr Jabarin conveyed a staunch message of resilience and 
steadfastness to the local and international media in attendance 
emphasising that the work of Al-Haq will not be thwarted by Israel’s 
smear campaign: “This is a political decision [by Israel] and not a 
security one. We, in civil society organizations, challenge the Israeli 
political and security officials to prove their claims about our work. 
This decision comes in a series of institutionalised practices aiming at 
smearing Palestinian human rights NGOs and human rights defenders, 
silencing them on the international level, draining their work, and 
targeting their resources. We are confident in the solidarity of our 
friends and partners around the world, those who believe in 
international law and the rule of law.”

Unperturbed by the designation, Mr Jabarin confidently dismissed the 
impact that the attack may potentially have on the work of the civil 
society organisations, maintaining that “we will continue our work as we 
used to do, as if there is no decision or designation by the Israeli 
Ministry. We will fight for the rights and freedoms of the Palestinian 
people, because our organizations belong to them and not to us.” In 
summation, Mr Jabarin reminded that Israeli war crimes and crimes 
against humanity are currently under investigation before the 
International Criminal Court (ICC), and that senior political actors in 
the Israeli parliament may be found individually criminally accountable 
in the Hague.

*General Director of Addameer, Sahar Francis, *reiterated concerns that 
the designations were linked to the progress of the investigation before 
the ICC. Further she explained that the attacks by Israel were a direct 
reprisal against the success of the Palestinian human rights 
organisations stating: “Such decisions and practices indicate that 
Israel is deeply concerned of the widespread work of our organizations. 
We have developed the discourse used in addressing this occupation; 
started to use words like “apartheid” and “the ICC.” Moreover, the 
success of the boycott campaigns and the resilience of the Palestinian 
people in their lands in Area C are just some examples of the success of 
our work.”

Ms Francis warned that all civil society organisations were now at risk, 
and that an attack against one, represented an attack against all. She 
further articulated that the risk may also potentially extend to donors 
and partner organisations, stating: “We demand from these organizations 
to take immediate actions to address this systematic attack. We must 
develop applicable security and accountability strategies to hold 
accountable all the perpetrators [of international crimes].”

*Assistant Minister for Multilateral Affairs, State of Palestine, Ammar 
Hijazi, *lauded the integrity of the Palestinian civil society 
organisations and explained how the State of Palestine had called for 
the international community to support the civil society organisations 
and human rights defenders. Mr Hijazi highlighted the State of 
Palestine’s important position against the designations and expectations 
from the international community stating: “We expect from the 
international bodies and organizations including the UN Secretary 
General and the High Commissioner to announce their clear and absolute 
position on this decision. We also expect the absolute refusal of this 
decision by the EU and the relevant agencies; they should not comply 
with this decision, or otherwise, the Palestinian government will 
re-visit its relationship with them.”





/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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