Julie Webb-Pullman reports

Human Rights

Hemaya: Gaza Inquiry appointments raise questions

PRESS RELEASE
Hemaya Center for Human Rights

hemaya logo (400 x 107)

Hemaya Center for Human Rights is deeply concerned about the events leading to the resignation of Professor William Schabas as Chair of the Independent Commission of Inquiry on the 2014 Gaza Conflict, and his replacement by Ms Mary McGowan Davis.

We consider that best practice requires that potential conflicts of interest are explored PRIOR to appointment to such inquiries, and we are most concerned that this appears not to have been the case in regard to Professor Schabas. We remain concerned that it has also not been the case re Ms McGowan Davis, given her hasty appointment. (more…)


UN Rights Council appoints members of commission to investigate purported Gaza violations

Source: UN News Centre

On 19 July 2014 in the State of Palestine, passing the rubble of homes destroyed in an Israeli air strike, a girl uses a hand truck to transport jerrycans filled with water, in the town of Rafah in southern Gaza. Photo: UNICEF/NYHQ2014-0978/El Baba

On 19 July 2014 in the State of Palestine, passing the rubble of homes destroyed in an Israeli air strike, a girl uses a hand truck to transport jerrycans filled with water, in the town of Rafah in southern Gaza. Photo: UNICEF/NYHQ2014-0978/El Baba

The United Nations Human Rights Council announced today the appointment of three members to its independent Commission of Inquiry to investigate purported violations of international humanitarian and human rights laws in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and particularly in the Gaza Strip since the conflict began on 13 June.

In a statement released this afternoon, the Council’s President, Ambassador Baudelaire Ndong Ella (Gabon), announced that the human rights body appointed Amal Alamuddin (United Kingdom), Doudou Diène (Senegal) and William Schabas (Canada) to serve as members on the international Commission. Mr. Schabas will also serve as the Commission’s Chair.

The Commission aims to establish the facts and circumstances of violations and crimes perpetrated and to identify those responsible. It will also make recommendations, in particular on accountability measures, all with a view to avoiding and ending impunity and ensuring that those responsible are held accountable, and on ways to protect civilians against any further assaults. (more…)


Taher: Disarming the resistance is a pipe dream of the occupier

Press Release
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
August 06, 2014

Maher Taher

Maher Taher

“Disarming the resistance is out of the question, and all factions hold tight to their weapons as long as their is occupation anywhere on the land of Palestine,” said Comrade Dr. Maher al-Taher, a member of the political bureau of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

“There are various media reports that Israel will not accept the reconstruction of Gaza except after the removal of the weapons of the resistance, and it is demanding to supervise everything that enters the Strip. We have affirmed very clearly that the idea of disarming the resistance is a pipe dream and an illusion that is unacceptable to all. It is unacceptable to even discuss this issue in principle or see it as a debatable question. It is our inalienable right to resist this occupation,” said Taher. (more…)


A question from Gaza: Am I not human enough?

by Maisam Abumorr
Source: Al Jazeera

Abumorr (400 x 265)

I remember when I attended a three-day workshop on international law and human rights by the ICRC in Gaza, one of the attendees asked the trainer: “What do I do to be qualified to obtain those human rights?” The trainer replied without much thought: “Nothing. You should be a human, that’s all”.

The question now is, what am I supposed to do/be to be qualified as a human? As far as I can tell, I live like normal humans do. I love, I hate, I cry, I laugh, I make mistakes, I learn, I dream, I hurt, I get hurt, I love pizza, I watched Titanic 6 times, I have a crush on Bradly Cooper, I get sick, I sometimes tell lame jokes to which only I laugh and last time I checked myself in the mirror I very much looked human. (more…)


Any ceasefire agreement must be based on international law, respect for human rights

Press Release
Ministry of Health Gaza
August 06, 2014

The Ministry of Health Gaza insists that any ceasefire agreement must guarantee the human rights of our people, most importantly, the right to health.

We therefore stress that any agreement arising out of the talks in Cairo must be based on international law, not self-interest.

We emphasise that international law is something that is applied without fear or favour, not negotiated.

Loss of Palestinian land up until 2012

Loss of Palestinian land up until 2012

(more…)


NZ parliament unanimously condemns Israel

nz parliament (400 x 300)

On Thursday July 31, 2014 the New Zealand parliament condemned Israel for its attack on an UNRWA schoopl in Jabaliya, in a motion passed without dissent.

The text of the motion, proposed by Green MP Kennedy Graham,is as follows:

“That this House note the comment of UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon regarding the latest shelling of a school in Gaza: ‘nothing is more shameful than attacking sleeping children. I want to make it clear that the precise location of the Jabaliya elementary girls school had been communicated to the Israeli military authorities 17 times, as recently as last night just a few hours before the attack. They were aware of the coordinates and exact locations where these people are being sheltered’. And that this House condemn Israel’s action and calls for an immediate ceasefire to prevent the loss of further innocent life.”


Joint Declaration by International Law Experts on Israel’s Gaza Offensive

The International Community Must End Israel’s Collective Punishment of the Civilian Population in the Gaza Strip

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As international and criminal law scholars, human rights defenders, legal experts and individuals who firmly believe in the rule of law and in the necessity for its respect in times of peace and more so in times of war, we feel the intellectual and moral duty to denounce the grave violations, mystification and disrespect of the most basic principles of the laws of armed conflict and of the fundamental human rights of the entire Palestinian population committed during the ongoing Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip. (more…)