Civil Society and the Question of Palestine

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30 November 2018

Middle East

  • On 30 November, Mossawa Center – the Advocacy Center for Arab Citizens in Israel issued a press release on its participation to the 2018 International of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, in which it also addressed the Jewish Nation-State Law and raised awareness on the situation of Palestinians in Israel.
  • On 27 November, Al-Haq issued a press release on a panel the NGO had organized on
    19 November, with the participation of Irish Senator Frances Black, for a presentation on Ireland’s Control of Economic Activities (Occupied Territories) Bill. The panel “What we saw in Palestine” was in a series of speaking events across Ireland, drawing on eye-witness accounts and their impressions of the impact of 51 years of military occupation and 70 years of continuing dispossession on the Palestinian people.
  • On 27 November, a hundred Palestinian, regional and international organizations sent a joint open letter to the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights regarding the UN Database on business enterprises with activities related to Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, which is to be established pursuant to Human Rights Council Resolution 31/36 of 2016. The letter urges OHCHR to publish the Database because it is a significant normative development in the framework of business and human rights in the context of occupation and accountability of the occupying power and private actors.
  • On 26 November, Adalah – The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel announced that Israeli state authorities were planning to amend a law passed in November 2015, allowing for the denial of social benefits from the parents of Palestinian minors convicted of throwing stones, “after admitting that the law [was] unclear and difficult to implement.” Adalah had filed a joint petition with Hamoked, Addameer and Defense for Children International-Palestine in April 2016.
  • On 23 November, the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) communicated a letter to the Senate of Ireland, to show appreciation for the support of the Control of Economic Activity (Occupied Territories) Bill 2018. The letter further stressed the importance of the continued support of the Bill by Members of the Senate and Lower House. The Bill was proposed by Senator Frances Black and calls for the banning of import or selling of goods or services originating in an occupied territory; or of the extraction of resources from an occupied territory in certain circumstances.


  • On 29 November, the Palestinian Return Centre issued a statement on the occasion of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, encouraging UN bodies, governments and civil society to publicly show support for the Palestinian cause and redouble their efforts to hold the Israeli government accountable, in particular by means of boycotts, economic sanctions and arms embargoes, for all its violations against the Palestinian people.

United Nations

  • On 29 November, the United Nations Office at Geneva commemorated the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. The UNOG Director-General chaired the meeting and read out the message of SG Guterres. The Special Meeting was also addressed by Senegal on behalf of the Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People. A similar Special Meeting was organized by the United Nations Office at Vienna and was well attended by Ambassadors, representatives of Vienna-based Organizations and NGOs.
  • On 29 November, the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People in cooperation with the Permanent Observer Mission of Palestine to the United Nations, officially inaugurated the solidarity day exhibit “Unrealized Rights, Unfulfilled Promises: 70 Years of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and of the Palestinian People’s Nakba” in the Public Lobby of the General Assembly Building.
  • On 28 November, the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People held a Special Meeting in observance of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People. The President of the General Assembly, the President of the Security Council, the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Member States, regional organizations, and civil society organizations participated in the event. In his remarks on the International Day of Solidarity, the Secretary-General called on “all actors, and first and foremost the leadership of Israel and the Palestinian Authority, to take bold steps and restore faith in the promise of Resolution 181, of two states living side-by-side in peace and security.”
  • In the afternoon of 28 November, the UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian held closed consultations with civil society organizations. Participating organizations included Defense Children International, Mossawa, Adalah, Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, Zimam, Applied Research Institute of Jerusalem, Addameer, Human Rights Defenders Fund, Torah of Justice, Gisha, Jewish Voice for Peace, Center for Constitutional Rights, Al-Shabaka, Institute for Policy Studies, Churches for Middle East Peace and others. The consultations were an opportunity for the NGOs to inform about their work and make recommendations action by the Committee.

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.