On 7 March 2023, Al-Haq delivered a joint oral intervention during the 52nd session of the Human Rights Council under Item 2; calling for action against Israel’s colonial settlement enterprise and support for the annual updating of the UN Database. In the intervention, Al-Haq emphasised that Israel’s colonial settlement enterprise fosters and reinforces an extensive system of domination and dispossession over the Palestinian people. The statement further highlighted the surge of violent settler attacks, protected by the Israeli occupying forces, encouraged by Israeli officials and granted impunity by the Israeli judiciary. Furthermore, Al-Haq stressed the importance of updating the UN Database annually to ensure corporations do not sustain a situation of prolonged occupation. Overall, Al-Haq’s intervention called for concrete actions against Israel’s colonial settlement enterprise, such as arms embargoes, economic sanctions, and other countermeasures.
The full statement reads as follows:
Israel’s settler colonialism, premised on the logic of elimination of the Palestinian people, is visible through its colonial settlement enterprise, which is fostered and itself reinforces an extensive system of domination and dispossession over the Palestinian people.
At a time when the newly-formed Israeli government has explicitly reaffirmed its intent to de jure annex the occupied West Bank, Palestinians have witnessed a surge of violent settler attacks, including on Huwwara and nearby villages, where some 500 colonial settlers invaded, killing 37-year-old Sameh Aqtash, injuring at least another four Palestinians, and burning dozens of homes, businesses and vehicles.
These attacks have not only been permitted but further encouraged by the IOF – which provide protection to Israeli colonial settlers; Israeli officials – who openly incite for further violence; and the Israeli judiciary – which grants impunity for these attacks.
Just as importantly, Israel’s colonial settlement enterprise is maintained by corporations that benefit and profit from the illegal situation and apartheid.
As such, the annual updating of the UN Database represents a key tool to ensure that corporations do not sustain a situation of prolonged occupation.
Indeed, the repeated and open-ended delays of annually updating the UN Database jeopardise the effectiveness and credibility of the Council.
While some Members of the Council have condemned Israel’s colonial settlement enterprise and settler attacks, these words must be translated into actions, including arms embargoes, economic sanctions, and countermeasures.
We also urge the High Commissioner to annually update the UN Database, in line with the principles of independence and impartiality.
 The statement was endorsed by: Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, the Community Action Center at Al-Quds University (CAC), the Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO), Civic Coalition for Palestinian Rights in Jerusalem (CCPRJ), Law for Palestine, the Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy (MIFTAH), Human Rights and Democracy Media Center (SHAMS), Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), and International Service for Human Rights (ISHR).