680 international figures call Biden Administration to uphold Palestinian Rights

An open letter to the US Biden administration was published, Thursday, demanding the provision of basic human rights for the people of Palestine, with 680 signatures, the New Arab (Al-Araby) reports.

Signatories of the letter include Israeli expatriate, author and historian, Ilan Pappé, and US academic, Noam Chomsky, in addition to religious and other civil society groups, demand President Biden to put “human rights at the center of US foreign policy”.

“More and more people are acknowledging that a sustained peace will not be possible until the Israeli government ends its institutionalized domination and oppression of the Palestinian people and starts being held accountable for all violations of international law committed against them. And this will not happen without US leadership,” said Sandra Tamari, executive director of US-based Palestinian advocacy organization, Adalah Justice Project.

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The individuals, from 75 different countries, called on President Biden to secure the accountability of Israeli authorities, to apply “diplomatic pressure” on the occupation state to end its “discrimination and oppression” of the Palestinians.

The signatories pressed the US Administration for an end to the decades-long policy of maintaining the “political status quo, devoid of justice and accountability“.

The Open Letter:

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Dear President Biden,

We, the undersigned global coalition of leaders – from civil society to business, the arts and faith communities, politics and Nobel laureates – call for the US leadership to take action to help bring an end to Israel’s institutionalised domination and oppression of the Palestinian people and protect their fundamental human rights. A sustainable and just peace – for all people – will remain elusive if US policy holds on to a political status quo devoid of justice and accountability.

Your administration has committed to a foreign policy “centered on the defense of democracy and the protection of human rights”. More recently, you stated, “I believe the Palestinians and Israelis equally deserve to live safely and securely, and enjoy equal measures of freedom, prosperity, and democracy.”. For Palestinians, the space between these statements and their daily lives could not be wider.

Even after a formal ceasefire, Israeli police and settler violence against Palestinians continues. The forced dispossession of Palestinians across the occupied West Bank, including families living in the East Jerusalem neighbourhoods of Sheikh Jarrah and Silwan, and aggressive actions by Israeli forces against peaceful protesters and worshippers at Al-Aqsa Mosque, are the latest evidence of a separate and unequal governing system. These policies unravel the social fabric of communities and undermine any progress towards a democratic, just and peaceful future. The logic driving them has led to the recent displacement of 72,000 Palestinians in Gaza who must also survive the ongoing humanitarian crisis caused by a 14-year blockade.

Moving forward, the United States must address the root causes of the violence which successive administrations have neglected. Your administration must apply concerted diplomatic pressure to help end the ever-expanding discrimination and systemic oppression and ensure accountability for Israeli authorities that violate Palestinian rights.

Only a consistent application of a rights-centred foreign policy can signal to Israel’s leaders that violations of international law will no longer go unaccounted for. Mr President, now is the time to set a new benchmark in American foreign policy that leads with justice and paves the way towards lasting peace.

Signed,

Mary Robinson, Former President of Ireland and former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights

Jan Egeland, Norwegian Refugee Council Secretary General and former United Nations Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator

Kumi Naidoo, Global Ambassador for Africans Rising for Justice, Peace and Dignity and former International Executive Director of Greenpeace International

And 680 global leaders from 75 countries.


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