Israel’s persecution of Human Rights Defenders Working in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT) (UN Statement)

The ICJ today denounced before the UN Human Rights Council Israel’s persecution of leading Palestinian human rights defenders.

The statement reads as follows:

“Mr President,

The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) strongly condemns Israel’s persecution of leading Palestinian human rights defenders, including through its arbitrary designation of their organizations as “terrorist”, the criminalization of their work and forcibly closing their offices.

The process leading to these designations makes a mockery of due process standards guaranteed under international law. Neither the individuals concerned, nor their representatives are allowed access to the purported evidence on which these designations are ostensibly based, which remains secret. Moreover, the Israeli authorities have engaged in an intimidation campaign to silence the representatives of the human rights organizations concerned, including through arbitrary travel bans and reprisal threats against them and their lawyers.

Israel’s actions have a chilling effect on these organizations and their legitimate work documenting and pursuing accountability for Israel’s crimes and abuses in the OPT.

The ICJ calls on this Council and its Member States to:

  • reject these unlawful and cynical designations;
  • ensure that the concerned organizations be able to continue their work unimpeded, including by resuming to fund them and circumventing any arbitrary restrictions on their banking activities;
  • support the work of the Commission of Inquiry on the OPT and Israel; and
  • urge Israel to end its system of apartheid against the Palestinians.

Thank you.”


Massimo Frigo, ICJ UN Representative, e: massimo.frigo(a), t: +41797499949


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