Over 290 US, International Groups Urge Biden To Stop ‘Israeli’ Attacks on Palestinian NGOs
By Staff, Agencies
More than 290 American and international organizations have called on US President Joe Biden to adopt proper measures and stop the Zionist military attacks on Palestinian civil society organizations in the occupied West Bank, arguing that his administration’s consistent support for the Tel Aviv regime has put the safety and well-being of Palestinian human rights defenders at serious risk.
The organizations said in a letter that while many in the international community were swift to condemn the ‘Israeli’ regime’s shameful political maneuver in October 2021 to designate six Palestinian civil society organizations as “terrorist” under the draconian Counter-Terrorism Law, Washington has refused to act or reject this clear attack on Palestinian groups.
The US administration “even took affirmative steps including canceling the valid US visa held by the head of one of the targeted organizations. The response so far has only enabled and empowered ‘Israel’ to sustain and escalate its repression,” they highlighted.
“The targeted organizations form part of the bedrock of Palestinian civil society that has been protecting and advancing Palestinian human rights for decades across the full spectrum of issues of global concern, including children’s rights, prisoners’ rights, women’s rights, socio-economic rights, the rights of farm workers, and justice and accountability for international crimes,” the groups said.
They further urged the US president to condemn the ‘Israeli’ regime’s repressive tactics and escalating campaign of criminalization and intimidation against Palestinian civil society organizations as well as their staff and board.
The American and international organizations also called for rejection of unsubstantiated accusations levied against Palestinian civil society organizations, and demanded ‘Israeli’ authorities rescind the designations.
They also urged the US government to take diplomatic action, in concert with European countries, which serves to protect the targeted Palestinian organizations, their staff, premises and assets.
The groups went on to ask US officials to refrain from imposing any obstacles or policies that would prevent direct engagement between Washington and Palestinian civil society, or otherwise preclude full, comprehensive public understanding of the severity and impacts of ‘Israeli’ repression.
They also demanded an end to US efforts to undermine the right of Palestinians and Palestinian civil society organizations to pursue justice and accountability, including at the International Criminal Court [ICC].
The organizations finally urged suspension of US military funding to the occupation entity and cessation of any diplomatic efforts that enable systemic impunity for the Tel Aviv regime’s gross violations of internationally-recognized human rights.
On August 18, the ‘Israeli’ army stormed and ordered the closure of Palestinian NGOs in the West Bank cities of Ramallah and al-Bireh.
The organizations’ offices were ransacked and their equipment confiscated. Doors were welded shut, with an ‘Israeli’ military order posted on them declaring the organizations “unlawful.”