The report “Captive Markets, Captive Lives: Palestinian Workers in Israeli Settlements” examines the experiences of Palestinian workers in Israel’s unlawful settlement enterprise in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (OPT). Al-Haq illustrates Israel’s reliance on the Oslo Accords to maintain control over the occupied Palestinian population and deepen their fragmentation, while holding the Palestinian economy captive, in what amounts to ‘economic annexation’.
Fragmentation is a main tool through which Israel maintains its apartheid regime over the Palestinian people as a whole, including Palestinian workers. The strategic geographic control areas of the Oslo Accords have contributed to the deepening and institutionalisation of physical, territorial, and demographic fragmentation. In turn, this has undermined Palestinian territorial and social contiguity and integrity, while ensuring the maintenance of Israel’s institutionalised regime of racial domination and oppression over the indigenous Palestinian people.
Since 1948, Israel has de-developed the Palestinian economy, and the continuing Nakba has forced internally displaced and vulnerable Palestinians to seek employment in the illegal settlements. These workers are caught in a jurisdictional limbo as the Palestinian Authority is unable to exercise enforcement jurisdiction over the settlements, and Palestinian workers do not have the same rights afforded to Israeli citizens. This precarious and inferior position is manipulated by unscrupulous Israeli and international corporations to exploit a cheap and easily disposable Palestinian labour force.
The report presents documentation by Al-Haq, in which Palestinian workers in Israeli settlements are subject to human rights violations.