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The Israeli and Colonial States "Day After"Plans are an Ongoing Denial of the Palestinian People's Right to Self-Determination
The Israeli and Colonial States "Day After"Plans are an Ongoing Denial of the Palestinian People's Right to Self-Determination

The Israeli genocidal war on the Gaza Strip, the colonial plans for the “day after”, and the weaponization of humanitarian aid against a fully besieged population of 2.3 million Palestinians and defunding and evicting UNRWA, with the intent to replace it are all tools used by the colonial-apartheid regime to force the submission of Palestinians. Not only are these actions illegal, but they also serve Israel’s strategic aim to continue to deny the inalienable rights to self-determination and return of the Palestinian people.

After over four months, not only has the Israeli genocidal war on the Gaza Strip killed over 28,000 Palestinians, demolished over 70 percent of Gaza’s homes and forcibly displaced 75 percent of the besieged population. Israel has knowingly and intentionally caused irreparable harm that will have long-term and devastating impact on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and imposed “conditions of life” that will slowly bring about their death: starvation, dehydration, and massive destruction of Gaza’s civil and residential infrastructure.

UN experts, and agencies, international organizations and the International Court of Justice (ICJ) have all indicated the urgent need for basic services and humanitarian assistance to constantly enter the Gaza Strip. Instead of fulfilling its obligation to provide unrestricted humanitarian aid, Israel decreased the of humanitarian supplies entering the Gaza Strip from an average of 10,000 trucks per month to around 1,860 since the onset of the Israeli genocidal war. Over 12,000 Palestinian in Gaza (only between 7 October and 3 December 2023) have been left with permanent disabilities, and the whole population has been mentally and physically traumatized. According to UN human rights experts, “all children under five – 335,000 – at high risk of severe malnutrition, [...] and a whole generation is now in danger of suffering from stunting, which causes irreparable physical and cognitive impairments [...] and will undermine the learning capacity of an entire generation.”  

Israel has waged new waves of its ongoing strategic campaign to completely eliminate the UNRWA, and with it, the Palestinian refugee issue. The recent Israeli demonization of UNRWA, allegations which have been proved to be baseless, resulted in 16 states suspending funding to the Agency. If funding does not resume, the UNRWA will, most likely be forced to shut down its operations in the region, including in Gaza, by the end of February. According to a plan drawn up by the Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, Israel Katz, after the war on Gaza ends Israel seeks to replace UNRWA with other international agencies. The Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, reported that Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has already instructed the army to study the possibility of distributing humanitarian aid in the Gaza Strip instead of the UNRWA. This will result in the militarization of the distribution of aid and condition Palestinian submission to Israel’s interests in order to receive lifesaving and basic needs and services.

In Jerusalem, similar actions are being taken to evict UNRWA from its headquarters there, claiming that the Jerusalem municipality will take over the provision of services.


The Israeli plans and tools seeking the elimination and replacement of the UNRWA, with Israeli-controlled entities in Gaza and Jerusalem, will hold the humanitarian and political future of Palestinians hostage to Israel's interests.

The UNRWA is an international agency with a permanent mandate until such time as UNGA Resolution 194 of 1948 and UNSC Resolution 237 of 1967 are put into effect. These actions are the precursor to eliminating the issue of Palestinian refugees, whose rights to return, property restitution and compensation (reparations) have been denied by Israel since 1948. Considering that 66.4 percent of the Palestinian people are refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs), the exercise of the right of self-determination cannot be achieved without the exercise of the right of return.  

Furthermore, with its colonial allies, Israel has been designing the future of the day after in the Gaza Strip. This includes the drafting of plans on how and who will govern the Gaza Strip, plans to demilitarize it, while Israel retains effective control, establish a “revitalized Palestinian Authority”, and engineering how to forcibly transfer the Palestinians outside the Gaza Strip. All of these plans have all taken place in absence and flagrant disregard to the Palestinian people’s will and right to self-determination, as the sole architects of their future.

Throughout its ongoing colonial-apartheid regime, and with support of other colonial powers, Israel has continuously sought full control over Mandatory Palestine. By employing three pillars of its system of domination - forced transfer, colonization and apartheid, Israel seeks to alter the land’s demographic reality and manipulate the people’s political future. Israel uses every tool in its arsenal to achieve its vision: controlling the “maximum land with minimum Palestinians”, at the expense of the Palestinian people’s rights to self-determination and return.

Therefore, BADIL reiterates the necessary measures states are required to implement, in order to fulfill their obligations to towards the Palestinian people’s inalienable rights to self-determination and return:  

  1. Refrain from excluding the Palestinian people from the so-called “day- after” plans and reaffirm that the Palestinian people are the sole rights-holder of their future;
  2. In accordance with the UN Charter, extend their full direct support to the Palestinian people in their struggle to restore their rights, and to the UN agencies and international organizations;
  3. Refrain from complicity in Israel’s denial of the Palestinian people’s rights, and take all measures available within international law, including severance of diplomatic relations, as well as economic, military, and cultural and athletic sanctions to hold Israel accountable for its policies and practices of colonization, apartheid, and forcible transfer;
  4. Ensure that UNRWA, as the most present, competent and legitimate UN agency, is the agency that leads and manages the humanitarian operations for the Palestinian refugees until their return.