On October 19, 2021, the Israeli Defence Ministry issued a military order declaring six Palestinian civil society organizations in the Occupied Palestinian Territory(oPt) to be labeled as “terrorist organizations”.
The organizations are Addameer, Al-Haq, Defense for Children Palestine, the Union of Agricultural Work Committees, Bisan Center for Research and Development, and the Union of Palestinian Women Committees. This labeling authorizes Israeli authorities to close their offices, seize their assets and arrest and jail their staff members, and it prohibits funding or even publicly expressing support for their activities.
These are organizations that actively document human rights violations committed by the Israeli occupation in oPt and advocate for the rights of Palestinian people in national and international forums.
Ana Alcalde, Director of Programmes and Global Engagement at ActionAid International, says:
“This unjust decision aims to undermine the work of human rights organizations in Palestinian territories and seeks to prevent those organizations from exposing Israeli violations committed against the Palestinian people under the silence of the international community.
“ActionAid is deeply concerned by this move and we condemn this labeling which criminalizes human rights works and represses Palestinian civil society organizations and human rights defenders.”
ActionAid is concerned this form of attack is in contravention of international law and international humanitarian law to which Israel must be held accountable.
We stand in solidarity with Palestinian human rights organizations and defenders. We call on the third states members and the international community to oppose this decision, and practice pressures on the Israeli government to reverse it immediately.