The Australia Palestine Advocacy Network welcomes the report released by Amnesty International confirming Israeli policies against Palestinians fit the definition of the international crime of apartheid.
We have seen these policies enacted on a whole-of-society scale through mass seizures of Palestinian land and property, arbitrary murders, forcible transfers, drastic movement restrictions, and the denial of nationality and citizenship. It’s also displayed on an individual level through forced family home expulsions, and discriminatory judicial procedures such as the ongoing trial of Mohammad El Halabi.
The report follows a long list of other institutions and human rights organisations – international, Palestinian, and Israeli – that have analysed and confirmed the policies of successive Israeli governments constitute apartheid. These include the Al Mezan Center For Human Rights, B’tselem, and Human Rights Watch, amongst others.
“The importance of the report cannot be understated, with the depth and breadth of research conducted clearly identifying the systemic methods used to oppress and dominate Palestinians,” APAN President, Bishop George Browning said.
“It also explains how all Palestinians are impacted by apartheid, whether they live in the diaspora, are citizens of Israel, or reside in the Occupied Palestinian Territories (OPT) of the West Bank and Gaza Strip.”
APAN Vice-President, Nasser Mashni, is a descendant of Palestinian refugees who fled their homes during the 1948 Nakba. He has experienced the apartheid policies first-hand as a Palestinian living in the diaspora.
“Apartheid meant that when my father passed away and his dying wish was to be buried next to his mother less than 10 km from Jerusalem in the West Bank, I had to call the Israeli Embassy for permission,” Mr Mashni said.
“Our requests were denied, and my father was buried in Melbourne.
“The only reason he was denied his dying wish was because he wasn’t Jewish.”
APAN joins the call for the International Criminal Court to consider the crime of apartheid in its current investigation in the OPT. We also call on the Australian Government to endorse the findings of the ICC and bring the perpetrators of apartheid crimes to justice.
Without justice for these crimes against humanity, it will not be possible to have a just, comprehensive, and sustainable peace.
The full Amnesty International report can be accessed here.
For more information, contact Jarred – [email protected] – 0434 869 088