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Grassroots Action Center

Defending Human Rights of Palestinian Children
On May 5, 2023, Rep. Betty McCollum (MN-04) re-introduced the Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children and Families Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act (H.R. 3103). Rep. McCollum has spearheaded legislative efforts that address Palestinian human rights, including her 2017 bill that was the first ever to do so in Congress. In addition to the Presbyterian Church (USA), over 75 civil society organizations and religious groups support the bill, including Jewish Voice for Peace, the Episcopal Church, and the United Methodist Church.

Palestinians have faced decades of discrimination and abuse under Israeli occupation in the West Bank. In addition to destruction and capture of property and illegal annexation of land by the Israeli government, around 700 Palestinian children are detained and prosecuted each year. These children are often abused verbally, physically, and psychologically, through means like binding, blindfolding, and stripsearching. They are usually not informed of their rights and may be forced into false confessions. H.R. 3103 explains how these children are judged under “a military court system that lacks basic and fundamental guarantees of due process in violation of international standards.” This corrupt process finds 99% of Palestinians guilty during trial.

Not only are abuses being committed against Palestinian children, but they are also being funded through American tax dollars. Congresswoman McCollum and the sixteen original cosponsors are committed to ending U.S. financial support of these human rights abuses. In her words, “Not $1 of U.S. aid should be used to commit human rights violations, demolish families’ homes, or permanently annex Palestinian lands.” In total, the U.S. has sent $158 billion to Israel in assistance and military funding. This is especially crucial following Israel’s recent military operation in Jenin that led to the displacement of over 500 Palestinian families.

Send a message to your representative in Congress to support the Defending the Human Rights of Palestinian Children and Families Living Under Israeli Military Occupation Act today!


 

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