Earlier today, the Israeli army attacked the offices of seven prominent Palestinian human rights and civil society organizations, stole client files about victims of Israeli violence, including children detained by the Israeli military, and welded the doors shut with iron plates. This violent act of repression is a transparent effort to silence, repress, and intimidate Palestinian human rights defenders and disrupt their work to expose the Israeli government's war crimes and human rights violations.
We need to act now. Last October, Representative Betty McCollum introduced a resolution to condemn the Israeli government’s repressive and authoritarian criminalization of Palestinian human rights groups.
Write to your members of Congress now to demand that they join the resolution and immediately condemn these attacks.
On October 28, 2021, Rep. Betty McCollum introduced a Resolution in the House of Representatives, H. Res. 751, opposing the designation of six Palestinian human rights groups as “terrorist” organizations. On October 19, Benny Gantz, the Israeli Defense Minister, signed an executive order designating 6 prominent Palestinian human rights groups as “terrorist” organizations. The named organizations include Addameer, al-Haq, Defense for Children International Palestine (DCIP), the Union of Agricultural Work Committees, the Bisan Center for Research and Development, and the Union of Palestinian Women Committees. The executive order did not provide any public evidence to substantiate these claims.
Many of these human rights organizations work closely with the international community to develop Palestinian civil society, document human rights violations and defend Palestinians in Israeli courts. For many years, several of these organizations, along with others working to document human rights violations against Palestinians, have contended with the Israeli military raiding their offices, contributing to the shrinking of civil society spaces in the occupied Palestinian territories (oPt). The labeling of these organizations as “terrorist” undermines the credibility of these groups within the international community and is a direct assault on the basic human rights of Palestinians.
Since the announcement, many prominent leaders, including Israeli human rights advocates and journalists, U.N. officials, and now Members of Congress, have spoken out in strong opposition. We need your voice, too! Make sure your House members know you support Rep. McCollum’s Resolution and would like them to co-sponsor it now.