Palestine: international NGO’s operations seriously under attack

On Thursday 19 October, Italian NGOs will meet Italian parliamentarians, Roberto Speranza and Arturo Scotto, in Jerusalem to discuss the dramatic increase in human rights violations in Palestine. Ahead of this meeting, the Italian platform of NGOs operating in the Middle East and Mediterranean, including SOLIDAR members CGIL and ARCS, have prepared a letter denouncing the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs decision’s not to issue new permits and work visas to new collaborators of International NGOs.

This decision affects, indiscriminately and without any justification:

  • All international non-governmental organisations (including Italian ones), albeit officially authorised to operate in the country.
  • All donors, both public and private, who, through international NGOs, are part of the funds for development aid and humanitarian aid to the Palestinian civilian population
  • All the governments and diplomatic representations of the countries of the NGO collaborators who are without any reason or notice denied the possibility of obtaining working visas for their fellow citizens.

SOLIDAR supports its members and the platform in their endeavour to denounce this decision as well as the worrying increase in human rights and international law violations against the Palestinian population.

Like many of our member organisation El Movimiento por La Paz (MPDL) has been working in Palestine for a long time.  In the case of the MPDL it has been active there for 19 years, with extensive in-field knowledge of the political and socio-economic context of the country together with its partners – the Palestinian Non-Governmental Organizational Network, Democracy and Workers’ Rights Center and Stars of Hope Society - within the framework of the European-funded project Decent Work, Social Protection and Freedom of Association in the Middle East and North Africa: Mobilising for Social Justice by strengthening and promoting CSOs, social movements and independent trade unions’ role in reforms and democratic changes’. As part of the programme, a study reporting on the situation in terms of social protection, decent work and freedom of association in Palestine in the framework of the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) was released in 2014. This year again, SOLIDAR will undertake a monitoring process and will publish an up- to-date report by the end of the year.