UNITED NATIONS FORUM OF CIVIL SOCIETY
IN SUPPORT OF MIDDLE EAST PEACE
1 July 2004
1 – 6
7 – 10
11 – 28
11 – 21
22 – 28
Civil Society Declaration
List of participants
1. The United Nations Forum of Civil Society in Support of Middle East Peace was held in Cape Town on 1 July 2004, under the auspices of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People and in accordance with the provisions of General Assembly resolutions 58/18 and 58/19 of 3 December 2003. It followed the United Nations African Meeting in Support of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, which was held at the same venue on 29 and 30 June 2004 (see separate report).
2. The Committee was represented at the Forum by a delegation comprising Paul Badji (Senegal), Chairman of the Committee; Victor Camilleri (Malta), Rapporteur of the Committee; Rastam Mohd Isa (Malaysia), Isaac M. Mogotsi (South Africa) and Nasser Al-Kidwa (Palestine).
3. The Forum consisted of an opening session, two plenary sessions and the closing. The themes of the plenary sessions were “Initiatives by civil society in Africa in solidarity with the Palestinian People”, and “Joining forces – African civil society and worldwide initiatives to support a peaceful solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict”.
4. Presentations were made by 14 experts, including Palestinians and Israelis. Representatives of 30 civil society organizations, including academic institutions, participated in the Forum. Delegates of 44 Governments, Palestine, 1 intergovernmental organization, 4 United Nations bodies, as well as special guests of the host country and representatives of the media attended the Meeting as observers.
5. The Forum was opened by Ibrahim Razool, Premier of Western Cape, and Paul Badji, Chairman of the Committee.
6. At the closing of the Forum, participants adopted a Civil Society Declaration (see annex I).
II. Opening statements
7. Paul Badji, Chairman of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, emphasized that the Committee had always considered indispensable the contribution of civil society to a peaceful resolution of the question of Palestine. He recalled that in the course of the African Meeting, held prior to the Forum, participants had reviewed the complicated and very serious situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem. They had assessed peace prospects and considered ways to improve them. The African perspective and the historical South African experience had enriched the proceedings.
8. He pointed out that that position and actions of civil society were especially prominent in international efforts to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. With the parties in conflict so obviously unequal, the power of international public opinion in support of the just Palestinian cause was extremely important in their quest for peace and freedom. He recalled that the unique capabilities of civil society had recently been demonstrated in such efforts as the Peoples’ Voice and the Geneva initiatives. Those had generated wide support and genuine interest because they sought to bring the sides together in a peaceful resolution of the conflict. The presence of the International Solidarity Movement on the ground had had an immense impact due to its non-violent nature. Peaceful protests and legal action against the wall built by Israel in the West Bank had been successful in challenging that dangerous decision and in mobilizing public opinion against it.
9. Ibrahim Razool, Premier of the Western Cape, pointed out that African peoples had a long experience with protracted situations. He recalled that during the struggles in South Africa, the best solutions had not always been the obvious ones. The leaders had been able to create a middle ground and to isolate the extremes on both sides. A major problem in the Middle East was intractability. Anger towards the occupiers had grown and those who pursued negotiation were forced to defend their credibility. Unfortunately, Israel had been given impunity, a licence to pursue its own goals. Civil society should seek resolution and avoid excessive anger in its response as anger used precious energy that was needed to win the struggle. The challenge was to find the potential for opportunity in what appeared intractable.
10. He stressed that in the greater Middle East region, the situation had been aggravated by the United States occupation of Iraq. Among European public opinion there was a lot of scepticism about the adventurous Middle East policies of their Governments. It was important to demobilize the language of violence in favour of negotiations and reconciliation. After decades of unilateralism and pursuing military conflict the question was whether there would be more of the same or whether civil society would take the opportunity to change things. The extremes of the debate in the Palestinian Territory, Asia and Europe must be isolated and activists must move away from the boundaries of those who felt “you are either with us or against us”. There must be a common middle ground that was inclusive. Religion could not be a factor in the debate. It was imperative to reconcile the seemingly irreconcilable rather than to seek the clarity of isolation.
III. Plenary sessions
Initiatives by civil society in Africa in solidarity with the Palestinian people
11. The first plenary session discussed the following sub-themes: legislative and political advocacy- reaching decision makers and politicians; mobilizing public opinion in support of the Palestinian people – efforts by NGOs, religious groups and the media; the South African experience; and the impact and educational responsibility of academic institutions and think tanks. The session was moderated by Ibrahim Razool, Premier of Western Cape.
12. Amjad Atallah, President, Strategic Assessment Initiative, Washington, D.C., analysed potential causes for the failure of the Quartet to resolve the conflict, or at least to stabilize the situation among Palestinians. He described the Palestinian Authority as similar to the Iraqi Governing Council, a body composed of extremely respected individuals who had no legal mandate to exercise any sovereignty. There was no dominant Palestinian national movement but rather, many movements, each with its own aims, goals and tactics. All suffered from a lack of transparency and accountability. The divergence in public and private diplomacy allowed enemies of either option to operate with greater ease and manipulate various segments of Palestinian society. The inability to distinguish between the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian Authority allowed the United States and Israel to marginalize Palestinian national aspirations. The confusion helped Israel to fragment the Palestinian national movement into a multitude of groups, movements, cells, cities, towns, villages and even families, each vying to direct Palestinian foreign policy based on their own opinions and interests. On the level of strategy, Palestinian diplomacy remained adrift. There was no single legitimate voice to demand that legal, moral and effective methods of resistance be employed.
13. Mr. Atallah opined that the Quartet had shifted its efforts from solving the conflict to stabilizing the immediate humanitarian disaster, concentrating on issues of governance reform with a Palestinian Authority whose mandated function was to administer the occupation and not to exercise sovereignty. That was a reflection of the dominance of the United States in setting the agenda for the international community. The United States, ultimately, had helped compromise the other members of the Quartet by using them to facilitate, or at least legitimate, a Likud Party agenda. The most recent example of that approach involved Israeli plans to create a long-term interim arrangement disguised as a withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and the northern West Bank. Mr. Atallah recalled some examples of positive individual State effort at conflict resolution, such as the United Nations Secretary-General’s study on a full-fledged international intervention mandated by the Security Council. Norway had played a positive role in facilitating the Oslo Accords and followed up with contributing troops to the Temporary International Presence in Hebron and assisting Palestinians in State-building enterprises. Switzerland had encouraged Palestinian and Israeli negotiators to conclude the permanent status agreements that had originated in Taba, resulting in the Geneva Accords. He added that if Palestinians found shortcomings in those Accords, those were shortcomings in the entire Palestinian negotiating position and were not reflective of any negative Swiss influence. Also, South Africa had facilitated meetings of various segments of Palestinian and Israeli society. For Palestinians, South Africa’s success was the single most important foreign example of what the struggle should have been. He called upon the international community as represented by the Quartet to follow the examples of Norway, Switzerland and South Africa in refocusing on an end to the conflict. All diplomatic efforts should be directed towards identifying the necessary mechanisms to end Israel’s occupation first and foremost. Anything less would continue to be counterproductive.
14. Simon Boshielo, International Secretary, Congress of South African Trade Unions, Johannesburg, said that if the Israeli Government moved to implement the resolutions of the United Nations, it would be a sign of strength rather than weakness. It would serve the interest of all humankind, who wanted to see the dispute resolved. He called upon all civil society to realize that the foremost task was the establishment of the Palestinian State. There was no intention to subdue anyone with a contrary view, but the most realistic approach would be to establish Palestinian sovereignty alongside the Israeli State. A debate on whether Israel should exist was sterile. The two-State solution was the most realistic, because it evolved from concrete reality. The world belonged to the brave. Cowards invoked military artillery against the world peace movement. History had proved that military might on its own would never deliver peace but instead hardened attitudes, killed women and multiplied orphans. Brave were those who called for and implemented peaceful solutions against the tide of militarization and war.
15. Naeem Jeenah, Spokesperson, Palestine Solidarity Committee of South Africa, Johannesburg, drew attention to the situation of Palestine refugees, which although constituting half of the Palestinian population, were not represented in the ongoing political process in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. He deplored the fact that there was no common Palestinian position to guide the international solidarity movement. He described Israel as a racist, an apartheid State, not a State for all of its citizens. It had no constitution. Its laws governing land ownership constituted apartheid; there was no law confirming mixed marriages. Israel was also an illegitimate State Member of the United Nations, because it did not abide by General Assembly resolutions 181(II) and 194(III), which were a condition for its membership.
16. He pointed out that despite the similarities between apartheid in South Africa and apartheid in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, Palestinians were subjected to worse conditions than the oppressed in South Africa had been. To overcome that situation, there must be a common platform acceptable to all and based on international law. International law should be applied to Palestinians as it was to others. The international community must call for an immediate end to the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza, an immediate dismantling of the apartheid wall and complete dismantling of all the illegal settlements in the West Bank, Gaza and Jerusalem. Palestinian refugees must have the right to return to their homes and to compensation. The establishment of a Palestinian State with East Jerusalem as its capital was a platform on which all could agree. He recommended that international isolation, internal resistance, underground movement and armed resistance, pillars of the South African struggle, should be kept in mind when talking about a platform for a solution to the Palestinian question. Consumer boycotts, divestment campaigns, sanctions and sports, academic and economic boycotts had been successful tools of South African resistance. South Africans fighting in the Israel Defense Force should be charged, prosecuted and incarcerated.
17. Shannon Field, Fellow, Institute for Global Dialogue, said the impact of academic institutions and think tanks was important. Most information coming from the media was biased and superficial. Palestinians would attack, followed by Israeli reprisals. Network broadcasts gave Israel an identity and a story with which most people could sympathize. On the other hand, Palestinians were usually portrayed as terrorists and little was seen of the difficulties of their daily existence. The BBC was lobbied heavily by the Jewish groups. Arabs in Britain had a less effective public relations effort. There was a growing Muslim population. Perhaps they would demand better coverage. There was a plethora of myths about the Middle East situation and a lack of independent research done on the Palestinian issue. Government policymakers must be engaged to develop educational programmes and to debunk existing myths. Many think tanks tended to be funded by special interests and the results were likely to be biased towards Israel. There should be an independent assessment of the Palestinian right to resist occupation. The Israeli Government did not want a dialogue as it would threaten unilateral withdrawal. It would also like to maintain the myth that Arab societies cannot be democratic.
18. She pointed out that think tanks in their research should not be neutral, but they also should not take activist positions. She recommended partnerships between academic institutions and other civil society organizations. The work of academics should include identifying violations of international law and United Nations resolutions. She cited examples of some big think tanks and their outputs. The American Enterprise Institute was a right-wing, very conservative establishment that had developed a Greater Middle East Plan. The Carter Center was more even-handed, whereas the International Crisis Group delivered objective analysis of the situation in the region. As regards curricula at universities, Muslim students in particular should demand more coursed on issues of interest to them.
19. Joshua Ruebner, Board member of the United States Campaign to Stop the Israeli Occupation, Washington, D.C., said the organization was a diverse coalition of more than 140 local and national organizations in the United States that worked together to educate and mobilize the public to change United States policy towards the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, to support peace, justice, human rights and international law rather than military occupation. Residents of the United States had the responsibility to help end Israel’s military occupation of the Palestinian Territory because it did so much to sustain that occupation. Too often the United States used its position not to promote human rights but to undermine them. The United States often sided with Israel and stood against the entire international community when the latter condemned the abuse of Palestinian human rights. The United States provided Israel with roughly $600 million in economic assistance and $2 billion in military assistance each year. Most Americans were unaware of the extent of United States support to Israel. Civil society’s role was to educate people and to give them the tools to change the pattern. Civil society must challenge the one-sided portrayal of the conflict. A change in United States policy would come only when large numbers of citizens demanded it. Such a strategy would work because it fit the pattern of every significant movement for progressive change in United States history. He called upon the Forum to launch a global boycott of the Caterpillar Corporation. When people realized that profits were being made from the blood of innocent people, they would force the Caterpillar Corporation to cease its business with Israel.
20. Max Ozinsky, representative of the Not in My Name Campaign (NIMN), Cape Town said NIMN was a loosely structured group of South Africans of Jewish origin calling for the withdrawal of Israel from the Occupied Territory and the creation of an independent Palestinian State alongside Israel. In 2001, NIMN had issued a statement protesting Israeli treatment of Palestinians and calling for Israeli withdrawal from the Occupied Territory. A major focus had been to support the war resisters – the Refuseniks – in Israel. NIMN had been able to undermine the impression that all Jews uncritically supported the Israeli State in its occupation of Palestinian land. It had also shown that the Palestinian struggle was not a religious struggle against the Jews. While initially rejected by the Jewish communal organizations, those groups were now more prepared to consider NIMN’s views. It was important to ensure that the issue of Palestinian solidarity was not seen simply as a Muslim issue. He expressed concern about the growth of Christian Zionism, in particular among Pentecostal Christians. In that regard, it was important to explain the position of Christian Palestinians. They needed also to guard against political sectarianism in the solidarity movement. There must be room for discussion, debate and difference in the solidarity movement, but it must focus on the issues that united them.
21. The Rev. Cedric Mayson, National Coordinator, Commission on Religious Affairs, African National Congress, Johannesburg, said that despite the fact that the apartheid regime had ruled the money, arms, industry, the universities, media, police, government, voters, and despite powerful support from major overseas Powers, there had been a peaceful transition to democracy. That had resulted from clear policies: the African National Congress had sought unity, not power; South Africans had pursued a policy of reconciliation based on non-violent realism; and they had realized that since comfortable people do not change, the oppressors must be made uncomfortable, ungovernable and unsustainable. Before the end of apartheid, other countries had had a vested interest in supporting apartheid for racist, political and economic reasons. The economic impact of sanctions was a major factor in breaking the oppressive regime, but the moral and political effect was that it enabled people to see themselves as supporters of oppression. The spirit that had driven South Africans was the certainty that they would win. He recalled that, a few years ago, he had been part of a delegation visiting the Occupied Palestinian Territory. He had felt as if he was returning to the apartheid era, with soldiers and police everywhere, constant demands for identification, forced removals, demolished homes, dispossession, brutality and fears. From his experience, he would strongly endorse a united, non-racial, inter-religious, progressive movement among the religious people of the world to present a positive vision of a solution to the Palestine question.
Joining forces – African civil society and worldwide initiatives
to support a peaceful solution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict
22. Terry Boullata, representative of the Popular Campaign against the Israeli Occupation Wall, East Jerusalem, said she lived in the shadows of the Occupation Wall. In a power point presentation, she illustrated how the wall interrupted daily life. During the day, people looked for the lowest part of the wall to climb over in order to go to school, work and the market. She demanded a halt in the construction of the wall, an end to the occupation and for the parties to move ahead with the peace solution. The wall had nothing to do with security but was all about land grab, the expansion of settlements and entrenching Israeli control of water. It ended the possibility of the viability of a Palestinian State. She called upon civil society to help in the dissemination of accurate and verifiable information locally and nationally. It also had to expose the deception disseminated in the Israeli community that the war was about Israeli security. Campaigning and lobbying efforts should always start with the decision makers. She called upon eminent persons and celebrities to visit the Occupied Territory as that brought attention to the situation there.
23. Soyata Maiga, Chairperson, Association of Women Jurists of Mali, Bamako, said Africans had an obligation to re-mobilize public opinion against armed conflict and support the Palestinian people. She reviewed African contributions to a better understanding of the Palestinian question, efforts in which civil society organizations had occupied an increasingly important place. She called attention to a decline in African government support for the cause of the Palestinian people at the very time when such massive and constant violations of human rights and international humanitarian law were taking place. This situation might be explained by the increasing number of conflicts in Africa, the pursuit of selfish material interests by certain States and American pressure. At the same time, African civil society had expanded and grown stronger. To forge and consolidate concrete actions in support of the Palestinian people and, beyond them, of the peace process in the Middle East, that role must be based on relevant and up-to-date information and the necessary material and financial resources. Making a number of concrete suggestions, she recommended establishing at the national and regional levels a coalition of African civil society that would serve as an engine for sustained and continuous activities to promote peace and security in the Middle East. Major organizations to be involved included the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights, the Arab Institute for Human Rights, the Inter-African Union for Human Rights, Women in Law and Development in Africa, as well as the African Women’s Committee on Peace and Development.
24. Richard Kuper, Spokesperson, European Jews for a Just Peace, London, pointed out that his organization stood for an end to the occupation, a withdrawal from all the settlements, Jerusalem as the capital of two States, and a just and fair solution of the refugee problem. He said his group worked towards encouraging both government intervention and the mobilization of civil society. The stronger the latter, the more likely the former was to come about. They worked alongside others fighting for Palestinian rights, where Jewish groups played an important role in deflecting unjustified accusations of anti-Semitism. The struggle was engaged at many levels. Lobbying at the national and European level was important to encourage the European Union to take a stance independent of the United States, for instance to demand from Israel that it meet the basic terms of the EU-Israel Association Agreement. The involvement of Jewish groups in that activity was crucial because guilt over the persecution of Jews in Europe, most notably in the case of Germany, led to an unwillingness to express justifiable criticism of Israeli Government actions. They supported Palestinian and Israeli organizations and movements engaged in related struggles. That was a direct link to their work in the Jewish community to develop a genuine pluralism of opinion and an active human rights and social justice movement with Palestinian-related issues at its core. As Jews, it was their task to distinguish between the multiple interests of Jews in the Diaspora and those of the citizens of Israel, to combat anti-Semitism, but to distinguish rigorously between anti-Semitism and criticism of Israel.
25. Fuad Samaai, Representative of the Muslim Judicial Council, Stellenbosch, stressed that the majority of South Africans identified with and supported the Palestinian liberation movement. However, the role of the United Nations in resolving the question of Palestine was bordering on a state of paralysis. He expressed concern about the impunity allowed to Israel in subjecting the Palestinian people to worse forms of oppression than what had been experienced by non-white South Africans. The United Nations could expel South Africa from its ranks for lesser crimes against humanity, while Israel had acquired indemnity. He charged that conferences such as the current one served no other purpose than to give legitimacy to the State of Israel. To be considered a truly representative world body, the United Nations needed to furnish valid reasons for its failure in the implementation of its own International Bill of Human Rights as well as Security Council resolutions on the question of Palestine. The Palestinians had been abandoned by the international community. The United Nations did not enjoy serious grassroots support, at least not among the Palestinian people and its million of supporters around the world, including South Africa. The world Organization had failed the Palestinian people in its mission of international peace and security. There was no sign of any action such as sanctions against Israel. He recognized that the United Nations did not have much power over its Member States, but as a world body it was expected to deliver on its mission statement. The only option for civil society was to pressure their Governments to do what the United Nations had failed to do – impose economic and other forms of sanctions against Israel.
26. Keith A. Vermeulen, representative of the South African Council of Churches (SACC), recalled that in the past, the United Nations had afforded special forums on apartheid where the Council of Churches was represented with other churches. The Council welcomed the role the Government was taking in putting Palestinian rights on the agenda. Governments were unable to implement political will if it did not have the support and understanding of civil society. In Africa, the churches had a role to play in assisting and strengthening the search for a peaceful solution to the Palestinian conflict. SACC was part of the movement to strengthen the worldwide solidarity campaign in support of the Palestinian people. He urged the participants to listen to the solutions. The conflict in civil society had caused many rifts in the apartheid struggle. The choice to resolve those rifts had resulted in independence. The same must apply to the Palestinian cause. SACC supported the Palestinian resolve to live together whatever form that solution might take. It would send, together with the World Council of Churches, missions to the Occupied Palestinian Territory to encourage non-violent forms of resistance to the occupation.
27. Ivor Chipkin, Fellow, Wits Institute for Economic and Social Research, Johannesburg, recalled that the 1955 South African Freedom Charter had provided a vision of a new society, an alternative to apartheid that was not simply the opposite of apartheid. The Freedom Charter did not simply assert that blacks had rights to and in South Africa, it recognized that whites did too. The African National Congress (ANC) had provided a vision of a non-racial society comfortable with and tolerant of social differences. It had destabilized the idea of the principle of homogeneity and entertained the notion that it was possible to establish a new kind of community based on difference. There was no commonality of language, race or religion. ANC had refused to reduce politics simply to a question of political institutions, borders and political rights, but instead had invited questions about the form of society that those political arrangements implied.
28. He expressed concern that there was no “compelling vision” of a Palestinian State, of an alternative to the State of Israel. It was one thing to decry the situation in the Middle East and to talk about the atrocities, but such comments usually stopped short of a compelling vision of the future. The challenge was to give expression to a compelling vision of a Palestinian State beyond the political aspiration, of a Palestinian State that was more than the opposite of the Occupied Territory. It was critical to continue with the campaigns of solidarity, but it was equally important to find places for the expression of the Palestinian vision. He opined that such a vision had not been articulated. It would not be brought about automatically. What would it mean to have a two-State solution? What kind of society would that be? The recent settlement in Iraq presented an extremely dangerous precedent, because it put into practice the idea that one could not leave it up to Arabs to establish a democracy. It was up to Palestinians in the Palestinian Territory to express their vision and it was up to the solidarity movement to support that vision.
CIVIL SOCIETY DECLARATION
We, the delegates of African civil society meeting in Cape Town at the United Nations Forum of Civil Society in Support of Middle East Peace on 1 July 2004, having heard first-hand accounts of Palestinian life under occupation and having deliberated on how we can play a role in supporting the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, make the following declaration.
We call upon the United Nations individually and collectively to take action to ensure that the State of Israel complies with all United Nations resolutions and requirements of international law and conventions.
We further call upon the international community to:
1. End the Israeli occupation of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem.
2. Demand the immediate dismantling of the Wall of Occupation, also known as the Apartheid Wall.
3. Demand the immediate dismantling of all Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
4. Demand the right of return for all Palestinian refugees as per General Assembly Resolution 194 (III).
5. Support the establishment of a sovereign, independent Palestinian State with its capital in Jerusalem.
6. Demand the freeing of all Palestinian political prisoners, including the right of President Arafat to freedom of movement.
7. Demand that Israel allow the International Atomic Energy Agency to inspect its nuclear sites.
We call upon African Governments, through the African Union Summit due to take place in Addis Ababa in July 2004, to:
1. Play a facilitating role for a just peace and the establishment of a sovereign Palestinian State and in support of the other demands made in this Declaration.
2. Review their economic and military links with Israel and the effects of these links on the Palestinian people.
3. End the presence and the activities of their citizens in the Israeli Defense Forces and to take the necessary action against in terms of their laws.
We affirm that the State of Israel does not speak or act on behalf of all Jews. The Conference also rejects the use of the label of anti-Semitism against critics of Israel.
We acknowledge that Palestinian women bear the harshest burden of the occupation. We call upon women’s organizations in Africa to express solidarity with Palestinian women.
We pledge ourselves to convene a conference of civil society organizations to build a broad movement of solidarity with the Palestinian people on the African continent. The conference should discuss the isolation of Israel in order to force it to meet its obligations in terms of international law. The specific forms of such isolation could include sanctions, disinvestment, consumer, sports and academic boycotts and the breaking of diplomatic ties.
We support the legitimate right of the Palestinian people to resist the occupation of their land.
Cape Town, 1 July 2004
LIST OF PARTICIPANTS
President, Strategic Assessment Initiative
Congress of South African Trade Unions
Board Member, Popular Campaign against the Israeli Occupation Wall
Fellow, Wits Institute for Economic and Social Research
Fellow, Institute for Global Dialogue
Spokesperson, Palestine Solidarity Committee of South Africa
Spokesperson, European Jews for a Just Peace
Chairperson, Association of Women Jurists of Mali
Rev. Cedric Mayson
National Coordinator, Commission on Religious Affairs
African National Congress
Board Member, Not in My Name Campaign
Premier of Western Cape
Board member, United States Campaign to Stop the Israeli Occupation
Fuad SamaaiRepresentative of the Muslim Judicial Council
Keith A. Vermeulen
Representative of the South African Council of Churches
Speakers at the United Nations African Meeting in Support of the Inalienable Rights
of the Palestinian People, Cape Town, 29 and 30 June 2004
Former United States Consul-General
Chair of the Philosophy Department, Tel Aviv University
Board member, B’Tselem
Head of Section, Middle East Department
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation
Special Rapporteur of the Commission on Human Rights
on the situation of human rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory
Leiden, the Netherlands
Senior Adviser to the Deputy President of South Africa
Minister for Negotiations Affairs
Former Speaker of the National Assembly of South Africa
Delegate-General of Palestine to Ireland
United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East
Secretary for International Relations, MPLA
Former Minister for Foreign Affairs of Angola
Former Member of Knesset (Labour)
Narandran Jody Kollapen
Chairperson of the South African Human Rights Commission
Speaker of the National Assembly of South Africa
Professor of Development Studies, University of Dar es Salaam
Chairman, Zanzibar Legal Services Centre
Dar es Salaam
Professor of International Relations
Ben Gurion University of the Negev
Minister of the Palestinian Economic Council for Development and Reconstruction
Delegation of the Committee on the Exercise
of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People
H.E. Mr. Paul Badji
Permanent Representative of Senegal to the United Nations
Chairman of the Committee
H.E. Mr. Victor Camilleri
Permanent Representative of Malta to the United Nations
Rapporteur of the Committee
H.E. Mr. Rastam Mohd Isa
Permanent Representative of Malaysia to the United Nations
Department of Foreign Affairs, South Africa
H.E. Mr. M. Nasser Al-Kidwa
Permanent Observer of Palestine to the United Nations
Representative of the Secretary-General of the United Nations
Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and
Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East
Algeria, Angola , Austria, China, Cuba, Cyprus, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Ghana, Greece, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Malaysia, Mali, Mauritius, Morocco, Mozambique, Namibia, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, Syrian Arab Republic, United Republic of Tanzania, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, Ukraine, Viet Nam, Yemen, Zambia, Zimbabwe
Entities having received a standing invitation to participate as observers in the sessions and the
work of the General Assembly and maintaining permanent observer missions at Headquarters
United Nations organs, agencies and bodies
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
United Nations Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat)
United Nations Information Centres
United Nations Population Fund
Civil society organizations
African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes
African National Congress
Association of Women Jurists of Mali
Boland Islamic Council
Bridges for Peace
Concerned Women’s Organization
Congress of South African Trade Unions
Darul Waqaf Islamic Trust
Friends of Al-Aqsa South Africa
International Women’s Peace Service, Palestine South Africa Branch
Islamic Social Welfare Association
Keep Peace Alive
Muslim Judicial Council
Muslim Youth Movement of South Africa
National Awqaf Foundation of South Africa
National Independent Halaal Trust
Neda Institute for Scientific-Political Research
Not in My Name (NIMN)
Palestine Solidarity Committee, South Africa
Palestine Support Committee
Palestinian Solidarity Group
Quaker Peace Centre
South African Council of Churches
South African Jewish Board of Deputies
South African National NGO Coalition
Trust for Community Outreach
Western Cape Cultural Councils Act
Wits Palestine Solidarity Committee
Cape Talk Radio
Host Country Media
Die Bürger Newspaper
L’ Indépendant newspaper
Independent TV Satellite Broadcaster
Media Review Network
Middle East and African News Agency
NASPERS (Die Bürger)
SABC TV News
South African Jewish Report
South African Press Association
The Association for Fair Media
The Associated Press
Voice of the Cape Radio
University of Cape Town, Faculty of Health Services
University of South Africa
University of Stellenbosch
University of the Western Cape
University of Witwatersrand
Omar A.A. Alassouli
Nafieh A.A. Assaf
Emad Edin Yacob Qirreish
United Nations system-Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR)
Document Sources: Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People (CEIRPP), Division for Palestinian Rights (DPR)
subject: NGOs-Civil Society, Palestine question, Peace process