Website policy


We provide links to articles we think will be of interest to our supporters, informing them of issues, events, debates and the wider context of the conflict. We are sympathetic to much of the content of what we post, but not to everything. The fact that something has been linked to here does not necessarily mean that we endorse the views expressed in it.
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Action Alerts


Support Amnesty International's campaign to Bring Mordechai Vanunu to London in June
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Did you know?



Settlements Generate Virtually No Economic Activity
"A recent Israeli government report estimated there are…$250 million in annual exports — [only] 0.55 percent of the national total — from the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights, territories the international community generally considers illegally occupied."
Jodi Rodoren cited by Richard Silverstein, 22 Jan 2014

Daily acts of violence committed by Jewish Israeli citizens against West Bank Palestinians
"These incidents — now particularly heightened during the olive harvest season — are not the aberration from the norm, but a regular feature of life in the occupied West Bank. In 2012, over 7,500 Palestinian olive trees were destroyed. In the 5-year period between 2007 and 2011, there was a 315 percent increase in settler violence."
Mairav Zonszein, Israel Must Stop Settler Violence, 8 November 2013
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Police impunity
After their own investigations establishing a prima facie violation, Btselem has lodged over 280 complaints of alleged police violence in the oPt since the start of the second Intifada: "we are aware of only 12 indictments" Btselem April 2013
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Runners in the first ever Bethlehem Marathon were forced to run two laps of the same course on Sunday 21 April 2013, as Palestinians were unable to find a single stretch of free land that is 26 miles long in Area A, where the PA has both security and civil authority. See Marathon report
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30th March, land day.
On 30 March 1976, thousands of Palestinians living as a minority in Israel mounted a general strike and organised protests against Israeli government plans to expropriate almost 15,000 acres of Palestinian land in the Galilee.The Israeli government, led by prime minister Yitzhak Rabin and defence minister Shimon Peres, sent in the army to break up the general strike. The Israeli army killed six unarmed Palestinians, wounded hundreds and arrested hundreds more, including political activists. All were citizens of Israel.
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* Out of 103 investigations opened in 2012 into alleged offences committed by Israeli soldiers in the occupied territories, not a single indictment served to date
Yesh Din, 3 Feb 2013
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* In total, out of an area of 1.6 million dunams in the Jordan Valley, Israel has seized 1.25 million − some 77.5 percent − where Palestinians are forbidden to enter.
Haaretz editorial, 4 Feb 2013
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Posts

A land with no moral limits

The central idea of this article by Uri Misgav is scary: that Israel, with its impunity from international law and its refusal to draw geographical boundaries, now knows no moral limits. Is there any act of cruelty or contempt for non-Jews which is beyond the bounds in today’s Israel?

South Hebron – ruled by God and the C.O.

In the latest of David Shulman’s illuminating reports, Ta’ayush volunteers try to engage in discussion the settlers and soldiers who are driving the Palestinian herders away. These men know nothing of international – or national – law; they live by the word of God (their unique interpretation) and of their commanding officer. In their ignorance of law, the soldiers terrify the shepherds by threatening to shoot them if they don’t go.

Falk’s final report

“The combined effect of the measures designed to ensure security for Israeli citizens, to facilitate and expand settlements, and, it would appear, to annex land, is ‘hafrada’, discrimination and systematic oppression of, and domination over, the Palestinian people.” This is Special Rapporteur Richard Falk’s final judgment on human rights in the oPt in which he also indicts corporate complicity. It is a closely argued and documented report, based on the body of international law.

NGOs campaign against house demolitions

Building new homes for Israeli Jews, knocking down existing homes of Palestinians (including Israeli Bedouin) constitutes Israel’s violent drive to control all land in Palestine/Israel, preferably confining Palestinians to refugee camps. Here, 36 charities and aid groups sign a statement calling for an immediate end to the demolitions. ICAHD and the ECCP issue a more political statement on demolitions, the EU and international law.

ICC should initiate investigation into Israeli crimes

The Israeli state has this defence against the crimes it has committed against Palestinians – so far with impunity: it is in a state of “armed conflict short of war” with Palestinians whom it has killed or imprisoned without due process. Al Haq and the PCHR have now urged the International Criminal Court to launch its own investigation into such crimes, thus helping free the people of the oPt from their ‘black hole’.

What will the Palestinians gain from new UN status?

The implications of Palestine’s new UN status are examined by two Q&A articles, 1) from the BBC and 2) from ACRI. Apart from enhancing its status in relation to Israel, the main consequence is seen to be the PA’s possible entry into international bodies and agreements, giving the PA new powers as well as responsibilities.

Findings on Palestine: crimes of ignoring or assisting international law violations

The final international session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine, considering “US Complicity and UN Failings in Dealing with Israel’s Violations of International Law Toward the Palestinian People”, was held in New York city, October 6-7. Its conclusions include the use of social media to arouse public knowledge. UPDATE Frank Barat responds to criticisms.

Judgment on Levy: report is selective and perverse nonsense

We have posted many judgments on the Levy report, which was delivered to Netanyahu by his hand-picked committee last July. Here Iain Scobbie takes apart the Levy Commission’s legal ‘reasoning’ finding nothing substantial or forensic in their thinking. An expert on international law, Professor Scobbie wrote this opinion for the European Journal of International Law blog.

Five stars of human rights work make urgent appeal for Russell Tribunal on Palestine in NYC

Five leading activist for human rights, committed through belief and experience to the work of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine, here issue an appeal to others who share their shock at Israel’s violations of international law, to attend and promote the tribunal’s final hearings in New York in October. The five are Alice Walker, Angela Davis, Dennis Banks, Russell Means and Stephane Hessel.

No Israeli leader sees the danger of the supremacist path they have chosen

David Steel, former MP, leader of the Liberal Party and Presiding Officer of the Scottish parliament, reviews a new book on creating public opinion on the Palestine/Israel conflict. He says: ‘What is the most appalling thread running through these essays is … the complicity of EU governments and that of the USA in letting the Israeli government get away with breach after breach of international law.’

Why the UK and EU can and should ban settlement products

It is one thing for individuals to boycott goods from illegal Israeli settlements, quite another for states to ban their import – especially in military gear. The TUC has taken a lead by commissioning an opinion from James Crawford, Whewell Professor of International Law, Cambridge University. Contrary to the fears of governments and the EU Commission, he gives his argument that they are entitled to take such action.

Panel tells Netanyahu West Bank not occupied land so all settlements are legal

A panel headed by retired Supreme Court judge Edmond Levy, appointed by PM Netanyahu to provide a legal opinion on settlements, has obliged him by affirming the West Bank is not occupied territory and thus settlements break no laws. This contradicts both international legal judgments and Israel’s own Sasson report of 2005. Right-wing bodies have welcomed the Levy report and urged its rapid implementation.

Veolia acts in ‘wilful defiance of international law’ – keep it out

Veolia is a multinational company providing services to local authorities and others in the UK. It also provides services linking Israel to its illegal settlements. JfJfP got legal advice on why Veolia could and should be excluded from contracts given by local authorities. The briefing is here.

Israel ignores law as settlers use scare tactics to steal water — for tourism

The shameless flouting of the law by Israel beggars belief. Theft, threats, intimidation and blockages by illegal settlers are effectively denying access to water by Palestinians in Areas B and C. No action is taken. While the Palestinians depend on water for farming as well as drinking and sanitation, the settlers want it to encourage tourism to ‘their’ attractive venues. One of the most direct reports from the UN’s OCHA.

Rights and wrongs of supporting Palestinians

The furore caused by Norman Finkelstein when he derided the BDS movement as a ‘cult’ and vested his authority in a 2-state solution and the primacy of international law, has not faded. This is a pitfall of solidarity work – confusing the value to a cause of the work you do for the authority to lead that cause in a particular direction. The IOA tries to get the discussion back on track.

The Russell Tribunal on Palestine

The next session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine will take place on the Southern tip of Africa, in Cape Town. The Tribunal will gather 5-7th November 2011 in the historic District 6 Museum. Frank Barat reports from the Tribunal.

The know-nothing hear-nothing Palmer panel

Outside Israel and its circle of defenders, the Palmer report into the killing of nine Turks on the Mavi Marmara has been greeted by universal disbelief and criticism. Jeremy Salt of Bilkent University, Ankara, gives a particularly lucid account of the report’s blind spots and asssumptions

Q&A on Palestinian statehood and international law

Al Haq, the West Bank affiliate of the International Commission of Jurists with special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council provides an authoritative guide to the PA’s bid for UN recognition of its statehood

Israel: no-one’s stopped us breaking the law so we’re a special case

Propagandists for Israel invented the lie that all critics of its oppressive policies want to ‘delegitimise’ its very existence. But it is the Israeli state that, by transgressing international law at every turn, has ‘delegitimised’ the civilising regime of international law argues Ewa Jasiewicz

Universal law on crimes against humanity

haaretz

An article in Ha’aretz discusss the contradictory position of the Israeli state towards its soldiers accused of crimes, followed by an excerpt from the Lords and Commons Human Rights Joint Committee dealing with international crimes and private prosecutions