Civil Society and the Question of Palestine

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5 March 2020

Middle East

  • On 2 March, Al-Haq submitted a legal position paper to the European Union on the membership of Mr. Haim Bibas, president of the Federation of Local Authorities of Israel and mayor of Modi’ in-Maccabim-Re’ut, in the Euro-Mediterranean Regional and Local Assembly (ARLEM). Al-Haq stated it was “regrettable” that the Assembly’s membership includes the representative of a town parts of which lie beyond the Green Line and constitute an illegal Israeli settlement in the occupied West Bank.
  • On 29 February, Al-Haq submitted comments and proposals to the Open-ended Intergovernmental Working group (OEIGWG), which was established by the Human Rights Council  to produce a legally binding instrument to codify, as binding law, human rights obligations for business enterprises. Comments were submitted by the NGO regarding the revised draft  intended to regulate the activities of transnational corporations and other business enterprises.
  • On 27 February, BADIL – Resource Centre for Palestinian Residency& Refugee Rights announced it was accepting applications for the second International Mobilization Course for the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People that will be held on 17-28 July 2020. The course is an opportunity for international advocates, activists, mobilizers, and policy officers to gain a deeper understanding of a human rights-based approach to international mobilization for the rights of the Palestinian people.
  • On 25 February, Peace Now denounced Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s comments that he gave a directive to deposit plans for 3,500 units in the “E1” area, which is the only land corridor connecting the northern and southern West Bank. Peace Now stated that the plan would imperil the two-State solution and “sever this territorial connection, torpedoing the possibility for a viable Palestinian State if Israel insists on retaining the land.”
  • On 23 February, Hamoked – Centre for the Defense of the Individual sent a complaint to the Israeli Ministry of Justice about the recurring phenomenon of Israel Security Agency (ISA) interrogations of minors who are kept in isolation and denied legal counsel. Hamoked demanded the Complaints Comptroller order the opening of an efficient and exhaustive investigation, “in order to eradicate these unacceptable practices and failures.”
  • On 23 February, Adalah – The Legal Centre for Arab Minority Rights in Israel sent an urgent letter to the Israeli Chief Military Advocate General, demanding the immediate opening of a criminal investigation into an incident that occurred in the Gaza Strip in which an Israeli military armored bulldozer was filmed dragging a human body along the ground.

North America

  • On 18 March, the Foundation for Middle East Peace, New Israel Fund and J Street will host Jessica Montell (Hamoked) and Andrea Prasow (Human Rights Watch) for a discussion, moderated by Khaled Elgindy (Middle East Institute), on “Israel, Palestine, and the Challenge of Defending Human Rights in an Increasingly Illiberal World”.
  • On 10 March, the Columbia University Centre for Palestine Studies will host a conversation with Hassan Jabareen, Founder and General Director of Adalah – The Legal Centre for Arab Minority Rights in Israel, and Suhad Bishara, Senior Lawyer, on the actions of the Israeli government to supress Arab/Palestinian voting in recent Israeli general elections, and the tactics used by the government, the Israeli Land Administration, and other entities to annex Palestinian land through a range of incremental measures other than wholesale annexation.

United Nations

  • On 28 and 29 February, the United Nations Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People, in cooperation with the Government of Malaysia and the Perdana Global Peace Foundation (PGPF), convened the International Conference on the Question of Palestine under the theme “Southeast Asian Support for the Rights of the Palestinian People” in Kuala Lumpur. The opening ceremony was chaired by Prime Minister of Malaysia Mahathir Mohamad, while panels discussed “Civil Society Actions” and “Regional Support for Palestinian Rights”.
  • On 26 February, United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov issued a statement on Israeli settlement announcements, with regards to the construction in Giv’at Hamatos and Har Homa and the “worrying plans for 3,500 units in the controversial “E1” area in the occupied West Bank.” The Special Coordinator urged the Israeli authorities to refrain from such unilateral actions that fuel instability and further erode the prospects for resuming Palestinian-Israeli negotiations on the basis of relevant UN resolutions, international law and bilateral agreements.


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.