Civil Society and the Question of Palestine

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Middle East

  • On 17 August, AlHaq published the article “Hibernations Must Not Curtail the ICC’s Investigation in the Situation in Palestine” in which the CSO’s Head of Legal Research and Advocacy, Susan Power, warns that any move by the Office of the Prosecutor to deprioritize its investigation into Palestine would risk compromising the safety of Palestinian witnesses and civil society, and fuel accusations of political interference with the Court.

North America

  • On 12 August, a group of USbased CSOs – Adalah Justice Project, US Campaign for Palestinian Rights, Movement for Black Lives (M4BL), Vermonters for Justice in Palestine, Palestine Legal, American Friends Service Committee, BDS Movement, Jewish Voice for Peace – issued the press release “Where We Stand on Ben & Jerry’s” in which they call on individuals and organisations to support Ben & Jerry’s board decision to not renew its licensing agreement in Israel when it expires at the end of 2022, to organise against laws limiting freedom of protest and boycott, and to support Palestinians against Israel’s policies and actions.

United Nations

  • On 13 August, OHCHR informed that UN human rights experts – Ms. Irene Khan, Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of expression; Ms. Mary Lawlor, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders; Mr. Michael Lynk, Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territory occupied since 1967; and Mr.Clément Nyaletsossi Voule, Special Rapporteur on rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and of association – called on the Government of Israel to immediately return confidential documents and office equipment that its military seized from the offices of Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCIP) in Al-Bireh, in the occupied West Bank. “We are deeply concerned by the Israeli military’s interference with the human rights work of a well-known and well-regarded NGO,” said the experts. “The indispensable work of Palestinian, Israeli and international civil society organizations has provided a measure of much-needed accountability in documenting and scrutinizing the dispiriting human rights trends in the occupied Palestinian territory.”
  • On 12 August, the United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator and Resident Coordinator, Lynn Hastings, issued a statement on the occasion of International Youth Day under the theme “Transforming Food Systems: Youth Innovation for Human and Planetary Health”, in which she stressed that this year’s commemoration was coming at a challenging time for Palestine and for the world. COVID-19 was placing unprecedented strain on food systems, disrupting markets and supply chains for small-scale farmers around the world, and threatened peace and stability, particularly among the most vulnerable and marginalized populations. “UN agencies will be celebrating this day with various initiatives online and offline, which I encourage you to follow. Let us use today as a reminder that we depend on food systems for human and planetary health and well-being and we cannot achieve it without our youth,” she said.

This newsletter informs about recent and upcoming activities of Civil Society Organizations affiliated with the United Nations Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. The Committee and the Division for Palestinian Rights of the UN Secretariat provide the information “as is” without warranty of any kind, and do not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, or reliability of the information contained in the websites linked in the newsletter.