Advocating for a just approach to Palestine
Ending Australia’s complicity with Israel’s human rights abuses
Together with a coalition of prominent Palestinian human rights organisations, we are calling on the Australian Government to undertake an urgent review of all trade cooperation with Israel and implement effective measures to protect the Palestinian people’s fundamental human rights. The Australian Government is considering strengthening trade, and the possibility of entering into a Free Trade Agreement with Israel. Our research highlighted programs, agreements and other instances that are evidence of Australia’s complicity with Israel’s violations of international law, violations which amount to international crimes. The various Palestinian human rights organisations which form the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC), have decades of experience in documenting and providing legal support to Palestinian communities impacted by these human rights abuses and international crimes, including at the UN and the ICC.
Our research points to evidence of Israel’s breaches of international law from which it derives significant economic benefits from its subjugation of the Palestinian people while implementing a settler-colonial apartheid regime that deprives the Palestinians of their own economic growth and prosperity. The ACIJ and PHROC provide a list of ten recommendations and concrete actions that the Australian Government must undertake to comply with Australia’s own obligations under international law and end its complicity with Israel’s human rights abuses and the commission of international crimes. The recommendations have helped interested persons and groups formulate statements and positions to call for concrete actions. They will also help our ongoing legal support work with communities impacted by international crimes.
Supporting accountability at the ICC: Palestine
The ACIJ is committed to working with our NGO partners in Palestine and around the world, who represent victims groups from the occupied Palestinian territory in Gaza and the West Bank, to ensure access to justice at the ICC without discrimination.
Our briefing paper on Australia’s international law obligations regarding Israel’s annexation of the West Bank was released in June 2020 in anticipation of Israel’s imminent annexation of the West Bank. It was widely read and shared. It may even have influenced the statement released by the Foreign Minister which recognised “land appropriations, demolitions, and settlement activity” the issues that formed the focus of our brief. In a climate where the Australian Government is often dismissive of Palestinian human rights on the global stage, this was a welcome step.
We recommended the implementation of effective measures against any imminent annexation and present de facto annexation policies such as targeted sanctions, and other measures for violations of international law arising from Israel’s occupation and settlement enterprise, which have expressly denied the Palestinian people fundamental human rights guarantees. We recognised Australia’s response in respect of Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea and recommended Australia consider other places impacted by occupation and annexation, such as Western Sahara and West Papua.
Latest on Accountability for Crimes in Palestine
Joint Media Release: Civil society organisations welcome the Future Fund’s exclusion of Elbit Systems, and call on the Federal and Victorian Governments to drop Elbit or risk complicity in serious violations of international law
Joint Media Release: Civil society organisations welcome the Future Fund’s exclusion of Elbit Systems, and call on the Federal and Victorian Governments to drop Elbit or risk complicity in serious violations of international law 15 March 2022 Civil society...
Media Release: Australia must confront the reality of Israel’s apartheid regime
Media Release: Australia must confront the reality of Israel’s apartheid regime 1 February 2022 Amnesty International today released its report finding that Israel practices the crime against humanity of apartheid against the Palestinian people across all the...
Joint Open Letter: Impose a two-way arms embargo on Israel to protect Palestinian lives
The Australian Centre for International Justice, joined 200 human rights organisations and individuals in an open letter to States Parties to the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) to impose a comprehensive two-way arms embargo on the State of Israel to protect Palestinian...
Joint NGO Submission: Australia’s international obligations relating to trade with Israel
In a submission to the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT), Palestinian and Australian human rights organisations have called on the Australian Government to undertake an urgent review of all trade cooperation with Israel and implement effective measures to...
Joint Media Release: Palestinian and Australian human rights organisations call on Australian Government to condemn Israel’s crimes in Gaza and East Jerusalem and reject strengthening trade with Israel
Joint Media Release: Palestinian and Australian human rights organisations call on Australian Government to condemn Israel’s crimes in Gaza and East Jerusalem and reject strengthening trade with Israel 13 May 2021 In a submission to the Department of Foreign Affairs...
Media Release: Israel committing apartheid and persecution as crimes against humanity, the Australian government must change track on Palestine
Media Release: Israel committing apartheid and persecution as crimes against humanity says a Human Rights Watch report, the Australian government must change track on Palestine 27 April 2021 Human Rights Watch today released a report finding that Israel practices the...
Joint Letter: Sheikh Jarrah Families Urge ICC Prosecutor to Investigate Forced Evictions in East Jerusalem
The Australian Centre for International Justice, joined 191 other human rights organisations to support Palestinian families in Sheikh Jarrah, occupied East Jerusalem, in their request to the International Criminal Court Prosecutor to investigate forced evictions as...
Media Release: ICC ruling on Palestine paves way for investigation of international crimes, Australia’s position rejected
6 February 2021 The Pre-Trial Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) has ruled that the ICC has jurisdiction over Rome Statute crimes committed in the territory of Palestine. The majority ruling paves the way for an investigation into crimes committed in...
Media Release: Australia urged to oppose Israel’s annexation of the West Bank
23 June 2020 The Australian Centre for International Justice (ACIJ) issues a briefing paper on Australia's international law obligations regarding Israel's annexation of large parts of the West Bank. Rawan Arraf, Principal Lawyer and Director of the ACIJ said: "The...
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