NGO Action News – 7 October 2021

Civil Society and the Question of Palestine

Middle East

  • On 5 October, 7amleh published a statement announcing that a coalition of human rights organizations have sent a letter to PayPal, asking the company to stop denying its services on allegedly discriminatory grounds to Palestinians in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT). According to this statement, PayPal refuses to operate in the OPT yet provides full access to users in Israel and Israeli settlements in the West Bank.
  • On 29 September, Al-Haq informed about a new report on financial transactions between 672 European financial institutions and 50 businesses actively involved with Israeli settlements, in the period January 2018 to May 2021. This report is published by the “Don’t Buy into Occupation” coalition, a cross-regional coalition of Palestinian and European NGOs.
  • On 27 September, Al Mezan issued a press release to mark the International Day of Solidarity with Palestinian Journalists. Al Mezan recalled the essential role played by media to monitor and report human rights abuses and violations. The organization also condemned alleged violations of international laws protecting journalists and the freedom of the press during recent Israeli military operations.

North America

  • On 4 October, Human Rights Watch issued a statement entitled “Time to Recognize Reality of Israeli Apartheid & Persecution”. Recalling the United Nations’ role in ending South Africa’s system of apartheid, the organization encouraged states to engage with the UN Human Rights Council’s Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel.

United Nations

  •  On 5 October, the Commissioner-General of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Philippe Lazzarini, delivered a statement to the United Nations General Assembly’s Fourth Committee. Mr. Lazzarini highlighted that the vulnerability and needs of Palestine refugees in the region increased since his last report on November 2020. He further stressed that the humanitarian situation in Gaza has deteriorated during the reporting period. Tensions remained also high in the West Bank, including in East Jerusalem, with an increase from the previous years in the number of injuries and fatalities caused by excessive use of force by Israeli Security Forces. Mr. Lazzarini also focussed on the impact of austerity measures on current and future UNRWA services.
  • On 30 September, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) published the report “West Bank demolitions and displacement – August 2021”. This monthly report informed that August recorded the third-highest monthly number of structures demolished or seized so far in 2021. OCHA also reported that 80 per cent of Area C displacement in August was in the Jordan Valley while 100 Palestinians were forcibly displaced in East Jerusalem in August alone, representing 46 per cent of the total number of Palestinians displaced in East Jerusalem this year.
  • On 29 September, the United Nations Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, Tor Wennesland, briefed the Security Council on the Situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question. Mr. Wennesland reported on the implementation of Security Council resolution 2334, covering the period from 12 June to 27 September 2021. Among other issues, he focused on the continued demolitions and seizures of Palestinian-owned structures across the occupied West Bank, movement restrictions, settler-related violence and on the high number of acts of violence against civilians during demonstration and confrontation between Palestinians and Israeli Security Forces. He also called for the parties to refrain from acts of provocation, incitement and inflammatory rhetoric, and urged Israelis, Palestinians, regional States and the broader international community to take practical steps that will enable the parties to re-engage on the path to peace.
  • On 29 September, UNRWA announced that the European Union has contributed EUR 5 million for humanitarian aid and early recovery in the Gaza Strip in support to UNRWA in the wake of the May 2021 hostilities. The Agency further informed that it will provide one-off cash grants to an estimated 10,000 vulnerable families whose homes had sustained damages.


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.



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