Israel/OPT: 288 Organisations Demand Biden Administration Condemn Israel’s Crackdown on Human Rights Groups

Dear Secretary Blinken:

The undersigned U.S.-based social justice, civil rights, and human rights leaders and organisations write to demand that you immediately and unequivocally condemn the Israeli government’s recent decision to outlaw and criminalize six Palestinian human rights and community-based organisations.

The Palestinian organisations currently targeted under the Israeli government’s draconian 2016 Counter-Terrorism Law 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 farmworkers, justice and accountability for international crimes. They are: Defense for Children International - Palestine, Al Haq, Addameer, Bisan Center for Research and Development, Union of Agricultural Work Committees, and Union of Palestinian Women’s Committees. They are trusted partners in our collective work to secure human rights for all.

The Biden administration has repeatedly expressed a commitment to center and promote human rights worldwide and protect the role of civil society. These actions by the Israeli government are a clear attack on human rights. As such, we urge you to issue a swift rejection of this unprecedented attack on Palestinian human rights organisations and the attempt by the Israeli government to shut down, delegitimize, isolate, and chill a growing human rights movement. We agree with 17 UN Special Rapporteurs that “the freedoms of association and expression must be fully respected in order to enable civil society to perform its indispensable work, and cannot be undermined by the manifestly egregious misuse of counterterrorism and security legislation.”

Smearing the promotion and defense of human rights as "terrorist" activity is a dangerous, well-worn tactic of authoritarian regimes and a shameful political maneuver to undermine the vital work of these organisations. In a joint statement, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International called the move “appalling and unjust” and “an alarming escalation that threatens to shut down the work of Palestine’s most prominent civil society organisations” and linked Israel’s emboldened authoritarian actions to decades of inadequate responses by the international community to Israel’s ongoing grave human rights abuses. This should change.

As groups committed to social justice, civil rights, and universal human rights, we have seen first hand the ways that the charge of “terrorist” and the so-called “war on terror” threatens not only international human rights defenders, but also social movements and marginalized communities here in the U.S.: Indigenous, Black, brown, Muslim, and Arab activists and communities have similarly faced silencing, intimidation, criminalization and surveillance under such baseless charges. A threat against the Palestinian human rights movement is a threat against movements for social justice everywhere, and in order to protect human rights and human rights defenders, all states must be held accountable for taking such manifestly unjust actions. While our government has long offered unconditional support to the Israeli government, our movements and organisations will always stand first and foremost with the rights and safety of people.

Therefore, we the undersigned organisations and individuals, call on you as Secretary of State, to:

- Affirm that the Biden administration’s commitment to human rights has universal applicability;
- Issue a public statement that rejects the Israeli government’s false accusations levied against Palestinian civil society organisations;
- Publicly condemn and rebuke Israel for this authoritarian action, and call on Israeli authorities to immediately reverse their decision and end all efforts aimed at delegitimizing and criminalizing Palestinian human rights defenders;
- Support Palestinians seeking the protection and promotion of fundamental human rights, justice and accountability, including at the International Criminal Court.

Sincerely,

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  • Co-signatories

    International and national organisation signers

    About Face: Veterans Against the War
    Action Center on Race & the Economy
    ActionAid USA
    Adalah Justice Project
    Alliance for Water Justice in Palestine
    American Friends Service Committee
    American Muslim Bar Association
    American Muslim Empowerment Network (AMEN)
    American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee
    Americans for Justice in Palestine Action
    Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC)
    BackYard Mishkan
    Beit Sahour USA
    Catalyst Project
    Center for Constitutional Rights
    Center for Jewish Nonviolence
    Charity & Security Network
    Civil Liberties Defense Center
    Coalition for an Ethical Psychology
    CODEPINK
    Committee in Solidarity with the People of Syria - CISPOS
    Corporate Accountability Lab
    Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR)
    Democracy for the Arab World Now (DAWN)
    Detention Watch Network
    Disciples Palestine Israel Network
    Dissenters
    DonkeySaddle Projects
    DSA BDS & Palestine Working Group
    Episcopal Peace Fellowship
    Episcopal Peace Fellowship - Palestine Israel Network
    Eyewitness Palestine
    Family Farm Defenders
    Fellowship of Reconciliation (FOR-USA)
    Feminists for Justice in Palestine
    Fight for the Future
    Free Democratic Palestine Movement
    Freedom Forward
    Friends of Sabeel North America (FOSNA)
    Friends of the MST (US)
    Front Line Defenders
    Global Justice Center
    Global Ministries of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and United Church of Christ
    Grassroots Global Justice Alliance
    Grassroots International
    Hindus for Human Rights
    Historians for Peace and Democracy
    Human Rights Watch
    ICAHD-USA
    ICNA Council for Social Justice
    IfNotNow
    Indigenous World Association
    International Association of Democratic Lawyers
    International Corporate Accountability Roundtable (ICAR)
    International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)
    International Indian Treaty Council (IITC)
    Israel/Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA)
    Jahalin Solidarity
    Jewish Liberation Theology Institute
    Jewish Voice for Peace Action
    Jewish Voice for Peace Health Advisory Council (JVP HAC)
    Jews for Palestinian Right of Return
    Just Foreign Policy
    Justice Democrats
    JVP Havurah Network
    Kairos USA
    Labor for Palestine
    MADRE
    MediaJustice
    Media Education Foundation
    Middle East Children’s Alliance
    Mosquito Fleet
    Movement for Black Lives
    Movement Law Lab
    MPower Change
    National Association of Democratic Lawyers (South Africa)
    National Family Farm Coalition
    National Iranian American Council
    National Lawyers Guild
    National Network for Immigrant & Refugee Rights
    National Students for Justice in Palestine
    Network in Solidarity with the People of Guatemala
    NOVACT International Institute for Nonviolent Action
    On Earth Peace
    Our Revolution
    Our Sacred Circles (OSC)
    Oxfam America
    Palestine Legal
    Palestinian Alliance for Peace
    Palestinian American Organisations Network
    Palestinian Christian Alliance for Peace
    Palestinian Feminist Collective
    Palestinian Youth Movement
    PARCEO
    Partnership for Civil Justice Fund
    Pax Christi USA
    Peace Action
    Presbyterian Church (USA)
    Progressive Democrats of America
    Project South
    Quaker Palestine Israel Network-Portland
    Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice
    ReThinking Foreign Policy, Inc.
    Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network
    Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ)
    South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT)
    Sunrise Movement
    The Presbyterian Peace Fellowship
    U.S. Labor Against Racism and War
    Unitarian Universalist Service Committee
    Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East
    United Church of Christ Palestine Israel Network
    United Methodists for Kairos Response (UMKR)
    US Palestinian Council
    USA Palestine Mental Health Network
    US Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (USACBI)
    US Campaign for Palestinian Rights
    Veterans For Peace
    Win Without War
    Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom US
    World Can’t Wait
    World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT)

    Local organisation signers

    1for3.org
    Agroecology for All - California
    American Iranian Friendship Committee (AIFC)
    Arab American Civic Council
    AZPal
    Bay Area Women in Black
    Black Christians For Palestine
    Black Lives Matter Philly
    Brooklyn For Peace
    Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture Ethical Action Committee
    California Scholars for Academic Freedom
    Central Florida Popular Front
    Chavurah for a Free Palestine of Kehilla Community Synagogue
    Chicago Committee Against War and Racism
    Christian-Jewish Allies for a Just Peace for Israel-Palestine
    Coalition of Anti-Racist Whites - Seattle
    Colorado Immigrant Rights Coalition
    Committee for a Just Peace in Israel and Palestine
    Committees of Correspondence for Democracy and Socialism - Corvallis Chapter
    CommonWealth Kitchen
    Concerned Families of Westchester
    Corvallis Divest from War
    Corvallis Palestine Solidarity
    Coulee Region Coalition for Palestinian Rights
    Culture and Conflict Forum
    D8 for Justice
    Dallas Palestine Coalition
    Delawareans for Palestinian Human Rights
    Demilitarize Portland-to-Palestine
    Dream Defenders
    East Side Jews
    Ecumenical Peace Institute/Clergy and Laity Concerned
    Falastiniyat
    Florida Palestine Network
    Food in Neighborhoods Community Coalition
    Friends of Sabeel-Colorado
    Friends of Wadi Foquin
    Gay Liberation Network
    Genesee Valley Citizens for Peace
    Good Citizens Of DFW
    Green Mountain Solidarity With Palestine
    Green Party of Yavapai County
    Harvard Black Graduate Student Alliance
    Human Rights Awareness: Palestine Israel/CD3 (HRA:PI/CD3)
    Indiana Center for Middle East Peace
    Interfaith Movement for Human Integrity
    Israel Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church (USA)
    Ithaca Committee for Justice in Palestine-Jewish Voice for Peace
    Jewish Alliance for Economic Justice
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Austin
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Boston
    Jewish Voice For Peace - Central Ohio
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Central Ohio
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Chicago
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Detroit
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Hudson Valley
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Indiana
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Knoxville
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Las Vegas
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Los Angeles
    Jewish Voice for Peace - New Haven
    Jewish Voice for Peace - New York City
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Portland
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Sacramento
    Jewish Voice for Peace - San Diego
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Santa Barbara
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Seattle
    Jewish Voice for Peace - South Bay
    Jewish Voice for Peace - South Florida
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Tacoma
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Triangle NC
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Tucson
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Twin Cities
    Jewish Voice for Peace - UCLA
    Jewish Voice For Peace - Westchester
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Bay Area
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Portland
    Jewish Voice for Peace- Central New Jersey
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Cleveland
    Jewish Voice for Peace - Vermont/New Hampshire
    Jews for Racial & Economic Justice (JFREJ)
    Jews Say No!
    Justice for Muslims Collective
    Kairos Puget Sound Coalition
    Kavod Boston
    Kehilla Community Synagogue
    Keshira haLev Fife
    Linn-Benton Pacific Green Party
    Lutherans for Justice in the Holy Land
    Madison-Rafah Sister City Project
    Main Street Legal Services, Inc.
    Meet a Muslim
    Middle East Crisis Response
    Minnesota Peace Project
    Missourians for Justice in Palestine (MJP)
    MSA West
    Mujeres Unidas y Activas
    Muslim Justice League
    Nevada Green Party USA
    Nevadans for Palestinian Human Rights
    New Hampshire Palestine Education Network
    NorCal Sabeel
    Northern New Jersey Jewish Voice for Peace
    Occupation Free DC
    Occupy Bergen County
    Oregon Coalition for Land and Peoples’ Rights
    Our Revolution - Colorado Springs CD5
    Our Revolution - Florida
    Our Revolution - Northern Virginia
    Pacific Green Party of Oregon
    Palestine Solidarity Committee - Seattle
    Palestine Teaching Trunk
    Palestinian American Community Center
    Parable of the Sower Intentional Community Cooperative
    PATOIS Film Festival, New Orleans
    Peace & Planet News
    Peace Action - Chicago Area
    Peace Action - New York State
    Peace Action - Wisconsin
    Pittsburgh Palestine Solidarity Committee
    Progressive Jews of St. Louis (ProJoSTL)
    Progressive Peace Coalition
    Queer Mikveh Project
    Reject Raytheon Asheville
    Rural Education Action Project, DBA Rural Vermont
    Sacramento Regional Coalition for Palestinian Rights
    Sacred Monsters Havurah
    Schaumburg Area Progressives
    Showing up for Racial Justice (SURJ) NYC
    St. Louis Friends of Bethlehem
    Students for Justice in Palestine - Harvard Divinity School
    Students for Justice in Palestine - Rutgers New Brunswick
    Students for Justice in Palestine - Seattle University
    Students for Justice in Palestine - Tufts University
    Students for Justice in Palestine - UMass Amherst
    SURJ Lower Columbia & SWWA
    Sustainable Agriculture of Louisville
    Syracuse Peace Council
    Tackling Torture at the Top
    The Holy Land Ministry at Spirit of Grace, Beaverton Oregon
    The Lace Midrash
    The Whatcom Peace & Justice Center
    Tikkun Olam Chavurah
    Tree of Life Educational Fund
    Tuck Away At Global Village Farm
    Tzedek Chicago
    Unite Oregon
    United Methodists’ Holy Land Task Force
    University of the Wild
    VA Progressives
    Veterans for Peace - Chapter 157 Eisenhower
    Veterans for Peace - Hector Black Chapter
    Veterans For Peace - Smedley Butler Brigade Chapter 9
    Veterans For Peace Linus Pauling Chapter 132
    Virginia Coalition for Human Rights (VCHR)
    Voices for Justice in Palestine
    Washington Advocates for Palestinian Rights
    Watertown Citizens for Peace, Justice, and the Environment
    We Refuse to Be Enemies
    Wellstone Democratic Renewal Club
    WESPAC Foundation, Inc.
    White People 4 Black Lives
    Women Against Military Madness
    Women of a Certain Age
    Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom - Minnesota Branch
    Yemeni Liberation Movement

  • Member organisations - Israel & Palestine
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