Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC)
|In their own words||"reach a situation whereby the Palestinian people enjoy their rights, chiefly the right of the Palestinian refugees to return to their original homes, the right to self-determination, and to build a Palestinian society based on the principles of justice, human dignity and the rule of law"|
- Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) does not release financial information, reflecting a lack of transparency and accountability.
- Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) is a coalition of human rights organizations established to “enable Palestinian human rights NGOs to act collectively to serve a common goal; promoting the role of law in the occupied Palestinian territory.”
- PHROC is a platform for NGO-members to lobby international forums and disseminate statements demonizing Israel. See below for further information on PHROC’s members.
- Regularly erases the context of Palestinian terror and utilizes demonizing rhetoric, accusing Israel of “apartheid,” “genocide,” “collective punishment,” and “war crimes,” as well as supporting a Palestinian “right of return.”
- In February 2021, PHROC published a policy paper titled “United States Policy on Palestine: 2021 and Beyond” calling for the “US to reevaluate its past blanket support of Israel” and “end the decades long environment of impunity that it has enabled for Israel to entrench its settler colonization and apartheid in the Palestinian territory.” The policy calls to “ban the import of all Israeli settlement products and services” and “End all military aid to Israel.”
- In January 2021, PHROC, alongside a number of Palestinian organizations, issued a declaration that the “Vaccine Roll-Out Exposes Israel’s Inhumane Acts of Apartheid.” PHROC falsely claimed that Israel has “legal obligations” to “ensure that quality vaccines be provided to Palestinians living under Israeli occupation and control.” The NGOs altogether ignore that Palestinians residing in Jerusalem are part of the Israeli health care system; that under the Oslo Accords the PA is responsible for health care of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza; and that the PA has adopted its own vaccine policy for its population.
- In June 2020, PHROC coordinator Mahmoud Alafranji was a signatory on a letter to the United Nations calling to “vote against Canada’s bid for Security Council” due to “Canada’s anti-Palestinian record.” According to the letter, “Canada has consistently isolated itself against world opinion when it comes to the long-suffering Palestinians… Canada has repeatedly sided with Israel.”
- In July 2020, PHROC was a signatory on an urgent appeal to the United Nations referring to Israel’s alleged “shoot-to-kill policy” as “contributing to the maintenance of Israel’s apartheid regime of systematic racial oppression and domination over the Palestinian people as a whole, which, embedded in a system of impunity, prevents Palestinians from effectively challenging Israel’s apartheid policies and practices.”
- In May 2020, PHROC signed a statement referring to the Nakba as being “far from a distant memory for the Palestinian people: it is an ongoing reality of Israeli settler-colonialism, population transfer, apartheid, and dispossession, policies which have never ended and continue to be entrenched today.” The statement further called to “take effective legal and political measures to eradicate colonialism, to bring perpetrators of suspected war crimes and crimes against humanity to justice at the ICC, and to publicly recognise and collectively overcome Israel’s apartheid regime imposed over the Palestinian people as a whole.”
- On May 18, 2019, PHROC published a statement referring to all of Jerusalem as “occupied,” and called for the UN to “take a firm stand against…unlawful unilateral measures to be taken by the U.S. in favor of an unveiled attempt at legitimizing Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise, occupation and colonization.” The statement further called to “Ban Israeli settlement products” and “Impose individual sanctions, including travel bans and asset freezes, on individuals that are identified as responsible for or complicit in the commission of war crimes and crimes against humanity.”
- In May 2018, PHROC published a “Nakba Statement” saying that “For the Palestinian people, 70 years of Nakba means seven decades of subjugation by Israel, characterized by occupation, apartheid and colonial policies and practices” (emphasis added).
- On November 16, 2017, PHROC released a statement “in solidarity” with the Women’s Affairs Technical Committee (WATC) following the decision of the Secretariat (joint funding from Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, and the Netherlands) to pull funding from WATC due to its inaugurating a youth center named after Dalal Mughrabi, a terrorist who in 1978 murdered 38 civilians, including 13 children.
- On April 17, 2017, on Palestinian Prisoners’ Day, PHROC released a statement stating that “This year marks 50 years of torture of Palestinian political prisoners through a military system which has historically been endemic and various forms of physical and psychological torture and ill-treatment,” and calling on the International Criminal Court to “open an investigation into the case of Palestinian prisoners and detainees, and bring those who have tortured, extrajudicially executed, forcibly transferred, and arbitrary (sic) detained Palestinians to be held to accountable.”
- In March 2017, PHROC condemned the PA’s “assault on the peaceful protest” of a court hearing of a man killed by the IDF and five others for weapons possession charges. The statement accuses the PA of “aiding the Israeli authorities in paralyzing Palestinian efforts to hold Israel accountable for violations.”
- During a wave of Palestinian violence that began in October 2015, PHROC repeatedly called upon the international community to “hold Israel responsible for the current escalation of violence and recall the root-causes of the ongoing situation, including Israel’s occupation.”
- PHROC referred to the resignation of William Schabas as the head of the UN inquiry into the 2014 Gaza war as a “charade put up by Israel” and “condemn[ed] in the strongest terms Israel’s latest and unfortunately far too common attempt to obstruct the work of the international human rights and justice mechanisms in investigating Israeli violations of international law against the Palestinian population.” In fact, the resignation followed revelations that Schabas had previously done legal work for the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) – a clear conflict of interest that would have disqualified him from the beginning if it had been disclosed. Furthermore, Schabas’ record of anti-Israel biases includes repeated calls for prosecuting Israeli officials for alleged “war crimes” at the International Criminal Court.
- During the 2014 Gaza war, PHROC submitted a letter to the EU accusing Israel of “blatant violations of international law,” “indiscriminately and disproportionally killing Palestinian civilians,” and “war crimes and crimes against humanity.” The letter urges the EU “to resort to all operational measures at its disposal with a view of bringing Israel’s violations of international humanitarian law to an end.”
- On July 14, 2014, PHROC sent an open letter calling on the EU and member states to “Immediately and unequivocally deplore Israel’s indiscriminate and disproportionate attacks against Palestinian civilians and civilian objects”; “Refrain from condoning Israel’s misuse of the notion of self-defence”; “Take the position that the root cause of the ongoing hostilities is Israel’s belligerent occupation and accompanied violations of international law”; and “Unequivocally support Palestinian accession of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.”
- In May 2018, PHROC sent a letter to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights regarding the “rapid escalation of killings by Israel at the Gaza fence.” The letter called for the “the international community [to] act collectively to enforce international law and sanction Israel.” The letter ignored the violent nature of the protests, which included Molotov cocktails, arson, and attempts to breach the border fence with Israel.
- On March 22, 2017, PHROC published a position paper titled “Withdrawing ESCAW Report is Complicity,” stating that withdrawing the UN’s publication accusing Israel of being “guilty of policies and practices that constitute the crime of apartheid,” is “considered as connivance and undermines the credibility of the universal human rights system… The Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) emphasizes that the UN Secretary General’s decision to withdraw this report contributes to impunity of Israel from sanctions in relation to crimes against humanity, whose elements were revealed in the report, and makes the Secretary General a partner in the suffering of the Palestinian people under the Israeli apartheid regime” (emphasis added).
- In November 2016, PHROC sent a submission to Michael Lynk, UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Rights Situation in the Palestinian Territories, on “Human Rights Defenders in the OPT…highlight[ing] the repressive environment within which human rights defenders (HRDs) work in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.” The submission referred to Manal Tamimi as a “human rights defender,” then a fieldworker for the Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling (WCLAC).
- Tamimi frequently utilizes antisemitic and violent rhetoric and imagery on social media. In August 2015, Tamimi tweeted, “I do hate Israel, i (sic) wish a thrid Intefada (sic) coming soon and people rais (sic) up and kills all these zionist settlers everywhere.”
- In February 2015, PHROC sent a joint letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon urging him to list “Israel’s armed forces in the annex to your 14th Annual Report on Children and Armed Conflict for committing grave violations against children in the Occupied Palestinian Territory” as “Repeated Israeli military offensives, prolonged military occupation, and recurrent military violence combined with complete disregard for international law has hindered any meaningful efforts toward implementing comprehensive protections for children living in the OPT.”
- On March 14, 2014, BADIL, on behalf of PHROC, held a side event at the UNHRC titled “Confronting Israel’s Impunity-Challenging the Status Quo” that honored Richard Falk and discussed the “responsibility of the UN to challenge Israel’s impunity in order to realize Palestinian human rights.”
- In July 2020, in response to the “Report of the Special Rapporteur addressing Israel’s Collective Punishment Policy,” PHROC called on “Third States to adopt effective measures to put an end to Israel’s illegal and inhumane policies of collective punishment, including sanctions and countermeasures, to bring the illegal situation to an end” (emphasis added).
- In May 2020, PHROC was a signatory on a statement calling for “Immediate targeted sanctions to stop Israel’s annexation and apartheid.” The statement further called for “A ban on arms trade and military-security cooperation with Israel,” “Suspension of trade and cooperation agreements with Israel,” and “Investigation and prosecution of individuals and corporate actors responsible for war crimes/crimes against humanity in the context of Israel’s regime of illegal occupation and apartheid.”
- In November 2019, PHROC signed a statement calling for the “international community to immediately impose sanctions on the State of Israel and illegal Israeli settlements” and “implement domestic legislation to prohibit and criminalize the import of illegal settlement goods and services into their territory.”
- In May 2019, PHROC was a signatory on a statement calling on the German Bundestag to revoke its joint resolution defining BDS campaigns against Israel as antisemitic.
- In February 2019, PHROC lobbied in support of the discriminatory UN database of businesses operating across the 1949 Armistice line, aimed at bolstering BDS campaigns against Israel.
- In May 2018, following the United States relocation of its embassy to Jerusalem, PHROC signed a call to states to “take immediate and practical measures, including by halting their aid and support to Israel, and imposing sanctions until Israel ends its annexation and unlawful prolonged occupation of the Palestinian territory.”
- In February 2017, PHROC released a statement calling upon “the international community to abide by their international obligations” and “act immediately by imposing sanctions against Israel,” as a result of the passing of the “Regularization Law,” which is “another brazen tool for Israel to confiscate privately held and registered Palestinian property for its illegal settlement enterprise.”
- In August 2016, PHROC submitted a joint complaint to the UN Special Rapporteur concerning review of the residency status of Omar Barghouti, a prominent proponent of BDS. The statement falsely describes BDS as “peacefully pursu[ing] a human rights agenda based on an international law framework”; in fact, BDS are tactics of political warfare, based on the exploitation of human rights double standards, comparisons to apartheid South Africa, and false accusations of “war crimes.”
- In February 2016, PHROC issued a statement that “For decades, Israel has failed to uphold its duties as Occupying Power and has instead deepened its occupation and regime of colonialism and apartheid” and “affirm[ed] the right of all individuals to participate in and advocate for boycott, divestment, and sanction actions, and calls on states and businesses to uphold their related legal responsibilities” and stated that the EU November 2015 labeling move against Israeli settlement products is “insufficient,” calling for a complete ban (emphasis added).
- In September 2015, PHROC was a signatory on a letter to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon urging the UN to “end its relationship with G4S due to the company’s clear and active role in human rights abuses.”
- In April 2012, PHROC released a statement for Palestinian Prisoners’ Day “Emphasizing imprisonment as a critical component of Israel’s system of occupation, colonialism and apartheid practiced against the Palestinian people,” and called for “intensifying the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign to target corporations profiting directly from the Israeli prison system. In particular, we call for action to be taken to hold to account G4S, the world’s largest international security corporation, which helps to maintain and profit from Israel’s prison system, for its complicity with Israeli violations of international law” (emphasis added).
- Al Mezan
- Highly active in anti-Israel lawfare campaigns, exploiting courts and international legal bodies to seek arrest warrants against Israeli government officials, file lawsuits against companies and governments doing business with Israel, and lobby for cases against Israelis at the International Criminal Court (ICC).
- Younis Aljaro, Chairman of the Board of Directors, is a former leader in the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP). According to Ma’an News Agency, Aljaro resigned from the PFLP in 2013.
- On, November 23, 2015, Al-Dameer, Al- Haq, Al Mezan, and the Palestinian Center for Human Rights submitted a document to Fatou Bensouda, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) claiming evidence and testimonies of alleged Israeli “war crimes” perpetrated during the 2014 Gaza war (Operation Protective Edge).
- Founded to promote a Palestinian “right of return” and a leader of international BDS campaigns. BADIL holds annual “right of return contests” and has published antisemitic cartoons on its website, as well as imagery promoting the elimination of Israel, which is a widely recognized form of antisemitism. A cartoon that won a monetary prize for 2nd prize in BADIL’s 2010 Al-Awda Nakba caricature competition is a blatant representation of classic antisemitic tropes, including a Jewish man, garbed in traditional Hasidic attire, with a hooked nose and side locks.
- Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCI-P)
- Ensan Center for Human Rights and Democracy
- In an April 2013 joint statement, Ensan discussed administrative detentions by the “Israeli Occupation Forces” and called on the “PA to actively engage in legal efforts to hold the Occupation State accountable and to contribute to efforts to boycott and divest from the Occupation State.”
- In 2011, Shawqi Issa, director of the Ensan Center, participated in the Third International Session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine titled “Are Israel practices against the Palestinian People in breach of the prohibition on Apartheid under International Law?” Issa spoke about “targeting of Palestinian parliamentarians, national political leaders and human rights defenders, the closing down of related organisations, and the current legislation being enacted to punish those who initiate or promote
boycott measures for opposition to Israeli domination.”
- Jerusalem Center for Legal Aid and Human Rights (JLAC)
- JLAC is highly active in promoting BDS campaigns, lobbying international bodies, and utilizing highly inflammatory rhetoric.
- In 2010, JLAC published the first edition of its book We Have Names, We Have a Homeland, which alleges that “brutality and sadism is the true face of Zionism and the State of occupation” and accuses Israel of “savage,” “abhorrent,” and “fascist” practices. The book continues to ask, “Has the history of humanity ever known such brutality as practiced at the hands of Israel…?”
- Lobbies international forums, including the United Nations, calling for “immediate intervention” in Israeli policies, and accuses Israel of violating International Humanitarian Law.
- Hurryyat called for individuals to “resist the Israeli travel ban policy,” claiming that “banning any citizen from travelling is a great crime and a major violation of the International Humanitarian Law.” The statement makes no mention of the reasons why Israel imposes travel bans, to prevent terrorists from entering Israel to carry out attacks.
- Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR)
- PCHR describes Israel’s policies as “apartheid” and accuses Israel of “ethnic cleansing,” “war crimes,” and the “Judaization of Jerusalem,” while regularly distorting or denying the context of terrorism against Israeli civilians.
- In an interview, PCHR director Raji Sourani admitted that he served “a three-year sentence [1979-1982] imposed by an Israeli court which convicted him of membership in the illegal Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine…” He was also denied a US entry visa in 2012.
- In February 2014, the PFLP organized a ceremony in Gaza honoring Sourani for winning the “Alternative Noble (sic) Prize.”
- Ramallah Center for Human Rights Studies (RCHRS)
- In March 2017, Fathi Nemer, Program Officer at RCHRS, wrote an op-ed stating, “The ethnic cleansing, massacres and colonialism needed to establish Israel can never be justified, regardless of who was there first… There is no possible scenario where it is excusable to perpetrate war crimes against a people.”
- In December 2016, RCHRS was a signatory on a statement for the “International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People” demanding that the “Zionist occupation authorities” be placed “on trial, for war crimes and crimes against humanity which they committed against the Palestinian People” and advocated to “continue working on increasing the international isolation of Israel until imposing international sanctions against it.”
- Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling (WCLAC)
- Accused Israeli forces of “resorting to extra-judicial killing, mass intimidation and collective punishment in order to maintain their grip on Palestinian territory in violation of basic international norms.”
- Supports BDS initiatives through participation in activities and events, signing of petitions and initiatives, and membership in BDS platforms.
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