Three Palestinian NGO networks (Ittijah, Forum of Palestinian NGOs in Lebanon, PNGO) representing a large number of Palestinian community organizations in 1948 Palestine/Israel, Lebanon and the 1967 Israeli occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, have issued a joint appeal for international protection of the Palestinian people. This appeal emphasizes the broad Palestinian consensus about the urgency of an international intervention which will enforce international law standards and protect Palestinian rights in the context of both, the current Israeli violence in the 1967 occupied Palestinian territories and future initiatives for a just and durable solution of the historical conflict in the Middle East.
In a time, when the Israeli and United States' effort to impose a solution based on the principle of "might makes right" has led the Middle East into a new round of violent conflict, BADIL calls upon the international community to take serious this Palestinian demand and to support all Palestinian efforts aimed at affirming that implementation of international law and UN resolutions are the only basis for justice and peace in the Middle East.
For 30 days the Israeli military forces continue their brutal acts against the Palestinian people, in cooperation with Jewish settlers and supported by Barak's Government.
Moreover, the Israeli government has escalated a very serious situation in the Palestinian territories.
In this context, the Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO) in West Bank and Gaza Strip, the Union of Arab Community Based Associations (Ittijah) in Israel and the FORUM of Palestinian NGOs in Lebanon would like to affirm the following:
1. The situation in the country is becoming extremely dangerous, particularly in light of Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak's continuous threats to use heavy military force against Palestinians.
2. The increase of danger is due to the open aggressive policy of Barak's Government, providing full support to the armed Jewish settlers for acting on their own, through continuous attacks against Palestinian civilians.
3. The situation is becoming critical as settlers, supported by the Israeli Police and army, continue to impose their control over the West Bank and Gaza strip roads and continue their horrifying attacks against Palestinians.
4. The Israeli Military Forces have imposed a comprehensive siege on the West Bank and Gaza Strip by setting up numbers of military check-points all over.
For these reasons, the three Networks affirm the need for an immediate INTERNATIONAL PROTECTION OF PALESTINIAN PEOPLE in the West Bank, including Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip.
Finally, we believe that a permanent solution should address the real causes for the current deteriorating situation, the continuous Israeli occupation for 33 years is the main cause. Therefore just and lasting peace cannot be achieved without putting an end to the Israeli occupation and insuring Palestinian legitimate rights, including the right of return and the establishment of a Palestinian independent state, with Jerusalem as its capital.
The Palestinian NGO Network (PNGO), Palestine;
The Union of Arab Community Based Associations (Ittijah), Israel;
The FORUM of Palestinian NGOs in Lebanon, Lebanon;
For more information on the Palestinian demand for international protection, see Intifada2000