NGO ACTION NEWS
Global

- Under the theme “God has broken down the dividing walls/dismantling barriers”, the Palestine Israel Ecumenical Forum (PIEF) of the World Council of Churches, an international, inter-church advocacy initiative, is inviting member churches, faith-based communities and civil society organizations worldwide to participate from 18 to 24 September in a week of advocacy and action called World Week for Peace in Israel Palestine. Churches around the world shall send a clear signal to policy-makers and communities about the urgent need for peace and the end of the occupation.


Middle East

- In a new fact-sheet published on 22 September, Gisha-The Legal Centre for Freedom of Movement notes with concern Israeli practices such as the blocking of travel from Gaza for thousands of people based on unspecified “security preclusions” and returning people back from the crossing on alleged security grounds even after they had received a permit to travel.

- Mediation training at schools to promote peaceful conflict resolution started to be provided by the Gaza Community Mental Health Programme in cooperation with the Ministry of Education, the organization reported on 21 September.

- On 20 September, B’Tselem-The Israeli Information Centre for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories released its findings regarding investigations conducted by the office of the Israeli Military Advocate General into suspected breaches of international humanitarian law by the IDF during the Gaza war of the summer of 2014 (Whitewash Protocol: The So-Called Investigation of “Operation Protective Edge”).



North America

- On 11 October, a selection of short movies (After History/Post Palestine) by Palestinian filmmaker Basma Alsharif will be screened at Columbia University’s Centre for Palestine Studies.

- Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP) is campaigning to collect signatures for an open letter asking U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry to raise with the Israeli authorities the issue of the trial of Palestinian human rights defender Issa Amro before a military court, reportedly scheduled to start on 25 September. Issa Amro is the director of the Hebron-based grassroots organization Youth Against Settlements. In December 2015, UN human rights experts had expressed concern regarding retaliatory acts against members of this organization.

- On 22 September, Haaretz reported that pressure by T’ruah: The Rabbinical Call for Human Rights had resulted in the Jewish National Fund in the United States releasing for the first time a detailed breakdown of its contributions to settlements.

- Following a decision by the University of California (UC), Berkeley to suspend last week a course examining settler colonialism in Palestine, Palestine Legal, an independent organization working to protect the civil and constitutional rights of people advocating for Palestinian rights in the U.S., informed on 19 September that after reviewing the syllabus, the university reinstated the course.

- The Global Network of Women Peacebuilders (GNWP), an international coalition of women’s groups and other civil society organizations, such as Wi’am: The Palestinian Conflict Transformation Centre in Bethlehem, announced the Cora Weiss Fellowship for Young Women Peacebuilders (May 2017 to May 2018); deadline for application is 1 November. The GNWP is involved in advocacy for the full implementation of UN Security Council Resolution 1325, mostly in countries affected by conflict.


United Nations

Leading up to the United Nations Summit for Refugees and Migrants, held on 19 September in New York, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) has been working with Palestinian makeup artist Rand Jarallah in the launch of a campaign which uses makeup as a tool to raise awareness about the specific reproductive health needs of women and girls during conflicts, natural disasters and other emergencies.


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