Israel Moves to Shut Down Palestinian Civil Society

On Oct. 21, Israel charged six prominent Palestinian human rights groups with being terrorist organizations. Israeli, European, and international human rights organizations, U.N. experts, and others have denounced the charge as baseless and politically motivated, a way to shut down the six organizations and muzzle criticism of Israel’s human rights record. Aseel AlBajeh is a legal researcher and advocacy officer at Al-Haq, Palestine’s oldest human rights organization and one of the organizations charged with terrorism under Israel’s 2016 anti-terrorism law. AlBajeh explains the work of Al-Haq, the threat posed to it and the other organizations by the charge Israel is making, and why Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and U.N. experts call the move by Israel not only an assault on Palestinian human rights but on human rights everywhere. They are calling on Israel to revoke the designation. AlBajeh puts the charge by Israel in the context of other actions Israel has taken against Palestinian civil society and the decades-long failure of the international community to uphold international law in israel-Palestine.



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