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Press Release: Civil society Organizations Welcome the Commission of Inquiry’s First Report to the Human Right Council and Support its Mandate at the HRC50
19، Jun 2022

During the 50th session of the Human Rights Council (‘HRC’ or ‘the Council’) taking place from 13 June – 8 July 2022, an Interactive Dialogue was held with the ongoing Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and Israel (‘CoI’ or ‘the Commission’). The Commission was established by the HRC on 27 May 2021 under resolution (S-30/1), following Israel’s escalation of violence and hostilities against Palestinians in May 2021. Al-Haq, along with 16 partner organizations, engaged with the Commission through an oral statement welcoming its first report to the Council, where the Commission found that “[t]he continuing occupation of the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, the 15-year blockade of Gaza and longstanding discrimination within Israel are all intrinsically linked”. The Commission further called for ending the Israel’s perpetual occupation of the Palestinian territory (OPT) as one of the steps to allow Palestinians to enjoy their human rights without discrimination, as “[e]ndig the occupation alone will not be sufficient.”

Al-Haq and partner organizations expressed their support to the Commission’s mandate, which allows for investigating the root causes of Israel’s systematic racial discrimination and repression against the Palestinian people on both sides of the Green Line, including Palestinian refugees, since 1948. In this regard, the statement called on the Commission to analyze the situation in light of Israel’s system of apartheid, Zionist settler-colonialism, population transfer and continued dispossession inflicted upon the Palestinian people as a whole.

While the Commission is an indispensable and overdue step in discharging the Council’s duty to promote and protect human rights, and as noted by the UN General Assembly “the United Nations has a  permanent responsibility towards the question of Palestine until the question is resolved in all its aspects in a satisfactory manner in accordance with international legitimacy,” some 22 states, led by the United States have nonetheless attacked the Commission during the interactive dialogue for its “open-ended” mandate and “longstanding disproportionate attention given to Israel in the Council”.

Al-Haq and partner organizations condemned such efforts aimed at undermining the Commission’s mandate as well as the double standards propagated by some states when it comes to the rights of the Palestinian people. The statement further urged all states to provide the utmost political, institutional and material support to enable the Commission to continue with its mandate unhindered.

To read the full statement, please see here.

List of signatories:

Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association

Al Mezan Centre for Human Rights

Aldameer Association for Human Rights

Bisan Center for Research and Development

Community Action Center/Al-Quds University

DCI - Defense for Children International – Palestine

Habitat International Coalition

Hurryyat - Center for Defense of Liberties and Civil Rights

Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center

Muwatin Institute for Democracy and Human Rights (Observer Member)

Palestinian Center for Human Rights

Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy (MIFTAH)

Palestinian NGOs Network

Ramallah Center for Human Rights Studies

The Independent Commission for Human Rights (Ombudsman Office) (Observer Member)

Women's Centre for Legal Aid and Counseling