Posts Tagged ‘Addameer’

Assault by Israel on Palestinian human rights NGOs

October 23, 2021

As if the fight against terrorists is not already complex enough, Israel has muddied the water more by accusing six prominent Palestinian human rights groups of being terrorist organisations, saying they have undercover links to a militant movement. Not surprisingly. most of the groups document alleged human rights violations by Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

The six are Al-Haq, a human rights group founded in 1979, [and the winner of 5 human rights awards, see: https://www.trueheroesfilms.org/thedigest/laureates/0F74BF45-72C4-9FDD-F96D-2B87BF6C7728] Addameer, Defence for Children International – Palestine, the Bisan Center for Research and Development, the Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees and the Union of Agricultural Work Committees.

The Israeli defence ministry said they were linked to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a secular political movement with an armed wing that in the past carried out attacks against Israel. The groups “were active under the cover of civil society organisations, but in practice belong and constitute an arm of the [PFLP] leadership, the main activity of which is the liberation of Palestine and destruction of Israel”, the defence ministry said. It claimed they were “controlled by senior leaders” of the PFLP and employed its members, including some who had “participated in terror activity”. The groups serve as a “central source” of financing for the PFLP and had received “large sums of money from European countries and international organisations”, the defence ministry said.

The groups, well known for their human rights work, have indeed quite openly received funding from EU member states, the United Nations and other donors.

Shawan Jabarin, the director of Al-Haq, said the move was an attempt to stifle criticism. “They may be able to close us down. They can seize our funding. They can arrest us. But they cannot stop our firm and unshakeable belief that this occupation must be held accountable for its crimes,he told the Times of Israel.

The Israeli human rights group B’Tselem called the government’s declaration “an act characteristic of totalitarian regimes, with the clear purpose of shutting down these organisations”. It added: “B’Tselem stands in solidarity with our Palestinian colleagues, is proud of our joint work over the years and is steadfast to continue so.”

Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, who work closely with many of these groups, said in a joint statement:

This appalling and unjust decision is an attack by the Israeli government on the international human rights movement. For decades, Israeli authorities have systematically sought to muzzle human rights monitoring and punish those who criticize its repressive rule over Palestinians. While staff members of our organizations have faced deportation and travel bans, Palestinian human rights defenders have always borne the brunt of the repression. This decision is an alarming escalation that threatens to shut down the work of Palestine’s most prominent civil society organizations. The decades-long failure of the international community to challenge grave Israeli human rights abuses and impose meaningful consequences for them has emboldened Israeli authorities to act in this brazen manner.

How the international community responds will be a true test of its resolve to protect human rights defenders. We are proud to work with our Palestinian partners and have been doing so for decades. They represent the best of global civil society. We stand with them in challenging this outrageous decision.

The US Department of State spokesperson Ned Price said his office had not been given advance warning of the designation. “We will be engaging our Israeli partners for more information regarding the basis for the designation,” Price said on a telephone briefing with reporters in Washington.

The move by the Israeli government represents a challenge for the many European countries that provide financing to the six organizations, European governments, .. now risk being accused of funding terrorism if they continue financing the six groups. One senior European official working in the region admitted the move was likely aimed at putting pressure on donors’ decision-making but said there needed to be an analysis of any evidence put forward by Israel, said CNN Europe.

See also the 4 November post by Just Security: https://www.justsecurity.org/78884/the-downstream-effects-of-israels-terrorist-designation-on-human-rights-defenders-in-the-us/

See also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2019/11/27/al-haq-named-2019-recipient-of-human-rights-and-business-award/

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/22/israel-labels-palestinian-human-rights-groups-terrorist-organisations

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/10/22/israel-palestinian-human-rights-groups-terrorism

https://www.msn.com/en-gb/news/world/stars-sign-letter-criticising-israel-s-move-to-label-palestinian-charities-as-terror-organisations/ar-AAQNM7q

https://news.un.org/en/story/2021/10/1103982

Palestinian human rights defenders continue to be persecuted

December 21, 2016

Sources:

Amnesty slams Israel’s detention of Palestinian human rights defender – Middle East Monitor

https://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/israel-threatens-expel-reporter-who-asked-apartheid-question

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-palumboliu/israel-puts-celebrated-_b_13590812.html

http://ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=21041&LangID=E

http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=16906&LangID=E

Israel urged to drop charges against Palestinian lawyer Anas Barghouti and other HRDs in Addameer

October 29, 2013

Amnesty International – among a plethora of NGOs – urges Israel to drop charges against Palestinian lawyer Anas Barghouti (24 October 2013). It says that Israeli must drop all charges against the Palestinian human rights lawyer released on bail last night. Anas Barghouti, a lawyer with the Addameer Association for Prisoner Support and Human Rights, was released on bail on the orders of a military judge at Ofer Military Court yesterday because confessions from other detainees submitted as evidence failed to prove he is a security threat. Barghouti had been arrested by the Israeli army more than a month ago 15 September, at a checkpoint north of Bethlehem in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. Nine days later he was charged with “membership in the Palestinian Front for the Liberation of Palestine” – an organisation which Israel has banned – and “leadership of a committee to organise demonstrations”. Amnesty International Middle East and North Africa Director Philip Luther said:“The release of Anas Bargouthi is positive news but he should have never been detained and charged in the first place.“ Barghouti’s arrest is part of a pattern of harassment by the Israeli authorities of Palestinian human rights organisations and activists in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, with individuals suffering arbitrary detentions, restrictions on movement, and raids of homes and offices. For example, last December Israeli security forces raided the offices of Addameer and two other Palestinian NGOs in Ramallah, seizing computers, work files and equipment and ransacking the premises. Addameer’s chair, Abdullatif Ghaith, a resident of East Jerusalem, has been banned by Israel’s military from entering other parts of the occupied West Bank or travelling abroad since 2011. Meanwhile, on 23 September, a week after the Bargouthi’s arrest, Israeli forces also arrested Samer Arbid, Addameer’s accountant. He was placed in custody for questioning until 21 October and then given a four-month administrative detention order – a military order without charge or trial which can be extended indefinitely.  Yet another activist from Addameer – Ayman Nasser – was arrested in October last year and charged with offences that included membership of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and carrying out activities in support of Palestinian prisoners. He was convicted of these charges a month later and spent a year in prison after a trial by military court, being released earlier this week. In detention Nasser told his lawyer that he had been tortured during interrogation following his arrest. He said he was interrogated for up to 20 hours every day and that during the interrogations he was kept in a stress position on a chair with his hands tied behind his back.

via AIUK : Israel must drop charges against Palestinian lawyer Anas Barghouti.

 

Ayman Nasser, Palestinian HRD in Israeli detention

October 23, 2012

Map showing the West Bank and Gaza Strip in re...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Middle East and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in general may get a lot of media attention but the issue of individual HRDs in Palestine often remains outside the limelight. Here is a recent example:

The Jerusalem based NGO Addameer reports that its staff researcher and longtime prisoner advocate Ayman Nasser was abducted from his home by occupation forces early on October 15. On October 18, he appeared in a military court in Jerusalem where his interrogation period was extended by seven days. Ayman addressed the court directly with the following words: “I believe that every human being has opinions and positions and if it’s not violating the law he can freely think and speak these opinions. I am a human rights defender who supports the Palestinian prisoners and I represent my opinions in the public media. My thoughts are not secret, they are public, and everyone knows them.”

Like many Palestinian prisoners, Ayman is subject to medical neglect – he is currently only receiving two out of the five medications that he requires daily. Addameer reported, “The judge ruled that based on ‘secret evidence’ he would extend Ayman’s interrogation period for another seven days and referred the situation of the medicine to the doctor at Moskobiyyeh detention center.” Moskobiyyeh, where Ayman is now held, is one of the most notorious detention centres in the Israeli occupation system; he was interrogated for 10 hours straight on October 17 and his interrogation has continued with similar intensity since that time.

Ayman spent six years in Israeli prisons, from 1992 to 1997. He has worked at Addameer since 2008, lectures in social work at Al-Quds Open University, and directs the Handala Centre, a cultural centre in Saffa village. On October 21, it was announced that he won a seat on his village’s municipal council in the weekend’s West Bank municipal elections, from his cell in Israeli detention.

Click here to send a letter to Israeli officials demanding the immediate release of Ayman Nasser and an end to the persecution of Palestinian human rights defenders.