10 November 2011

Asia and the Pacific

Palestine Solidarity Campaign Thailand (PSC Thailand) on 2 November issued a call to join the ninth annual International Week against the Apartheid Wall from 9-16 November, in support of the Stop the Wall campaign. It also called to support The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation’s campaign to re-plant olive trees in the West Bank.

Palestine Solidarity Campaign Thailand (PSC Thailand) on 17 November will hold its next meeting in Bangkok in preparation of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People.

The Palestinian Return Centre (PRC) on 2 November, on the occasion of the anniversary of the Balfour Declaration of 1917, issued a statement, demanding an end to the Palestinian plight and granting the full rights for the Palestinians.

The Russell Tribunal on Palestine on 5-7 November held its Third International Session entitled “Are Israeli practices against the Palestinian People in breach of the prohibition of Apartheid under International Law?” in Cape Town, South Africa.

The Conservative Middle East Council on 8 November held a policy forum briefing on the Israel-Palestine conflict with Sir Jeremy Greenstock, former UK Ambassador to the United Nations and Ahron Bregman, King's College, London, at the House of Commons in London.

Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) on 17 November will be launching at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London their first briefing paper entitled “Terminal Decline? Palestinian Refugee Health in Lebanon.” Filippo Grandi, UNRWA Commissioner-General, will be on the panel to discuss the report's findings.

Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory

Adalah on 17 October submitted a new report entitled “Economic, Social and Cultural Rights of Arab Citizens of Israel” to the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights to assist it in its upcoming review of Israel’s report, to take place in Geneva on 16-17 November. The report discusses the economic, social and cultural rights of Palestinian Arab citizens of Israel, and details Israel's violations of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), which Israel ratified in 1991.

Adalah on 20-22 October held its 6th Annual Arab Law Students' Conference entitled “Legal Tools for Achieving Social Justice.” 70 law students from universities and colleges throughout Israel and thirty human rights lawyers, academics and activists participated in the event.

Adalah on 24 October filed a petition to the Jerusalem Administrative Court against Israel's policy of preventing residents of the Gaza Strip, who file tort lawsuits against the Israeli security forces, including the army and the General Security Service (GSS) and their witnesses, from entering Israel in order to appear in court and completing the necessary legal proceedings.

OneVoice from 24-27 October organized a visit to Israel and the West Bank by a delegation of influential business leaders, including CEO Howard Sumka and Seinfeld actor Jason Alexander. The delegation met with Government officials, TV celebrities and attended grassroots activities in Israel and the West Bank.

The Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD) at a press conference on 31 October launched its latest report on illegal Israeli practices in East Jerusalem entitled “No Home, No Homeland: A New Normative Framework for Examining the Practice of Administrative Home Demolitions in East Jerusalem.” ICAHD announced that it will submit complaints to the three UN Special Rapporteurs on Human Rights of IDPs (Internally Displaced Persons), on Adequate Housing, and on Human Rights Violations in Occupied Palestinian Territories, claiming that Israel's policy in East Jerusalem violates international law and may constitute a war crime.

The Palestinian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities on 31 October announced its campaign to vote for the Dead Sea as one of the “New Seven World Wonders,” which is being promoted by a public relations company.

The Civic Coalition for Defending the Palestinians’ Rights in Jerusalem on 1 November issued a press release condemning the closure of four Palestinian NGOs in East Jerusalem. The four NGOs are well-respected and include Shua’a Women Association, Al Quds development foundation, Work without borders and Saeed Educational Center.

The Palestinian Center for Development and Media Freedoms (MADA) on 1 November in a statement welcomed UNESCO’s vote in favour of full Palestinian membership, saying that this unprecedented act will open new opportunities for cooperation between UNESCO and numerous Palestinian institutions.

The Palestinian Non-Governmental Organizations Network (PNGO) on 2 November released a statement to announce that the two Freedom Wave ships, the Canadian Tahrir and the Irish Saoirse vessels, carried humanitarian supplies and 27 peace activists from nine countries, including a Palestinian student from Haifa. The PNGO said that the two boats carried messages of solidarity, steadfastness, and of unity, liberation and hope, to the Palestinian people.

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) in a press release on 3 November strongly condemned the punitive measures enacted by the Israeli Government in response to the admission of Palestine to UNESCO.

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) on 3 November issued a press release to welcome the "Freedom Waves" Flotilla and demanded that the closure of Gaza must be lifted.

Dalia Association on 3 November called on its supporters to sign a petition to respect Palestinian’s right to self-determination in development and support a reform of the international aid system.

Al Shabaka on 5-7 November followed the Russell Tribunal in Cape Town with a live twitter feed.

Gisha on 7 November issued a new position paper offering a legal framework for the complex situation in the Gaza Strip.

The Israel Palestine Center for Research and Information (IPCRI) on 9 November held an event entitled “Afternoons with IPCRI: The Secret Back Channel for the Prisoner Exchange” in Jerusalem. Dr. Gershon Baskin was the main speaker.

Stop the Wall Campaign will organize three demonstrations in support of the ninth annual International Week against the Apartheid Wall from 9-16 November. One demonstration will be held on 13 November for the southern part of the West Bank in Tarqumiya, a central demonstration on 15 November in Qalandiya and one on 20 November for the northern part of the West Bank in Tulkarem.

North America

The US Campaign to End the Israeli Occupation on 27 October issued a call to support its campaign of re-planting Palestinian olive trees in the West Bank.

Americans & Palestinians for Peace (AMPAL)’s President John Dabeet on 27 October was interviewed on Palestine's bid for statehood in the United Nations and the UNESCO deal. The interview was broadcast on PATV Channel 18 in Iowa City.

American Friends of UNRWA, AFU, on 29 October renewed a call for action to protect the Khan al-Ahmar elementary school in the West Bank from Israeli demolition orders, and asked supporters to sign a petition on The school is made of mud and tires and serves about 75 Bedouin children ages six to ten.

Interfaith Peace-Builders (IFPB) and the Resource Center for Nonviolence on 31 October organized the visit of a 23-member delegation to Israel/Palestine. The purpose of this delegation is to educate North Americans about the region and deepen their understanding of its conflicts. This delegation focused on the Palestinian olive harvest which takes place each autumn. The olive harvest is an occasion of particular cultural and economic importance for Palestinian communities and a time when tensions between Israeli settlers and Palestinian residents of the West Bank run high.

Jewish Voice for Peace on 1 November called on its supporters to sign a petition against the US budget cut to UNESCO, following the Agency’s vote to admit Palestine as a Member State.

The International Solidarity Movement (ISM) on 2 November issued a press release announcing the Freedom Waves to Gaza initiative and asking its supporters to act in defense of the Irish and Canadian boats that challenged Israel’s siege of Gaza.

Interfaith Peace-Builders on 3 November issued its report entitled “The more we are pressured, the stronger we are” about its 39th delegation visit to Israel/Palestine and the challenges Palestinian farmers face during the olive harvest season.

The Palestine Center on 4 November held its Annual Conference entitled "A Turning Point: For Palestine and the Region" in Washington DC.

Jewish Voice for Peace from 1-5 November will organize a series of lectures in the Washington DC area on the topic of “Health & Human Rights in Israel/Palestine.”

The Middle East Negotiation Initiative (MENI) at Harvard Law School’s Program on Negotiation on 7 November held a panel discussion on “The Gilad Shalit-Palestinian Prisoners Exchange: The process, the deal and implications.”

Columbia University’s Arnold A. Saltzman Institute of War and Peace Studies on 10 November held a panel discussion entitled “The Politics of Human Rights in International Conflict: The Palestinian/Israeli Case Study.”

The NGO Working Group on Israel-Palestine on 14 November will organize a panel discussion featuring Danny Seidemann, from Terrestrial Jerusalem, entitled “Jerusalem, Settlements, and the Two-State Solution,” at the Church Center for the United Nations in New York.

Columbia University’s Maison Française on 5 December will hold an event entitled "La banlieue est lointaine de la Palestine," charting the history and forms of a transnational affiliation between French activists, artists, musicians, and writers who have given voice to the Palestinian cause for the past 40 years.

Defence for Children International – Palestine Section on 25 October released a report entitled “Voices from East Jerusalem, the Situation facing Palestinian Children.” The report addresses the impact of Israel’s unilateral annexation of East Jerusalem. Through the voices of 15 children and three mothers, the report sheds some light on the day to day hardships they face living under prolonged military occupation
United Nations

UNRWA on 20 October delivered messages of support and donations of backpacks to 75 children at Khan al-Ahmar elementary school, which faces the threat of Israeli demolition. UNRWA’s latest activities are part of its “Don’t demolish my future” campaign launched earlier this year.

The UN Committee on the Exercise of the Inalienable Rights of the Palestinian People on 26 October released its annual report to the General Assembly.

UNESCO on 31 October admitted Palestine as a new Member State. UNESCO’s Director-General on 31 October delivered a speech on the admission of Palestine, and on 2 November issued a statement on withholding of funds by the US.

UN Secretary-General Ban-ki Moon on 2 November issued a statement expressing concern about Israel’s response to UNESCO’s decision to accept Palestine as a new Member State.

The President of the UN General Assembly, Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, in an address to the Special Political and Decolonization Committee on 4 November said that the UN body should continue working for a “just and comprehensive negotiated peace settlement” in the Middle East that will result in two viable sovereign States – Israel and Palestine – coexisting peacefully.

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