Al-Haq attends 35th Session of the UN Human Rights Council
Al-Haq participated in the 35th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, which took place between June 6–23, 2017. Al-Haq’s engagement with the Council included a written submission, an oral statement, and participation in a side event marking fifty years of Israeli occupation of Palestinian territory.
The written submission focused on Israel’s illegal annexation and changes to the demography of Jerusalem, its exploitation of natural resources in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT), and on Israel’s excessive use of force against Palestinians throughout the past five decades.
On 19 June 2016, Al-Haq delivered an oral statement during the Human Rights Council’s general debate on Item 7: human rights situation in Palestine and other occupied Arab territories. The statement highlighted Israel’s continued colonization of Palestinian land, and its policies and practices aimed at the expulsion of the Palestinian people. These include Israel’s illegal transfer of 600,000 settlers into the OPT, and the revocation of over 14,000 residency permits for Palestinians from East Jerusalem since 1967. Al-Haq also highlighted the dire humanitarian crisis created by Israel as a result of its 10-year closure of Gaza, and its military assaults on the area.
Also on 19 June 2017, Al-Haq joined Badil, Addameer, Diakonia, and DCI-Palestine for a side event titled “Indefinite Occupation: Time for Accountability” at Palais des Nations. Al-Haq outlined Israel’s colonial enterprise, including the economic incentive structure perpetuating the occupation five decades on.
Throughout these events and in meetings held during the session, Al-Haq emphasized the importance of Item 7 given Israel’s prolonged belligerent occupation of Palestinian territory and the violations of international human rights law and international humanitarian law which it entails. The international community must finally take action to end Israel’s occupation: non-participation in Item 7 and continued inaction will neither bring peace nor justice.