By Gianluca Mezzofiore, International Business Times (UK)
September 9, 2014
Israel has been accused of using unlawful detention and restrictive asylum policies to try to pressure 51,000 Eritrean and Sudanese migrants into leaving the country.
A fresh report by New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW) concluded that the Israeli government created “convoluted legal rules” to get around international and domestic law about protection of refugees and used the insecure legal status of Eritrean and Sudanese migrants to detain them indefinitely.
The asylum-seekers find themselves in a coercive position with the choice of living in fear of spending the rest of their days locked up in desert detention centres” or risking life-threatening abuse back home.
“Destroying people’s hope of finding protection by forcing them into a corner and then claiming they are voluntarily leaving Israel is transparently abusive,” Gerry Simpson, senior refugee researcher at HRW and author of the 83-page report, said. Continue reading
This year’s Israeli Apartheid Week in South Africa created a buzz nationwide. BDS South Africa and other Palestine solidarity groups teamed up with trade unionists, political parties, student bodies, churches, youth organizations and activists in Gaza to reach out to a wide audience. Organizers used various means to inspire broad-based support for boycott, divestment and sanctions activism.
Huge billboards were put up to announce Israeli Apartheid Week. Durban-based GangsOfGraffiti inspired fellow street artists and graffiti writers to participate by creating works with “Free Palestine” as the theme. On walls in several cities, artwork appeared in support of IAW and boycott activism. In thirteen towns around the country, the film Roadmap to Apartheid was screened, including all major cities and in Soweto (“National film tour, 5-11 March 2012,” BDS South Africa ).
According to an article in The Jerusalem Post, the Israeli “Public Diplomacy Ministry” had sent a delegation to South Africa to “battle the apartheid label,” but Israel’s messengers did not succeed in changing the perception held by many South Africans that Israeli apartheid is similar to apartheid in South Africa (“Envoys to fight Israel Apartheid Week on campus,” 19 February 2012).
Fatima Gabru of the Palestine Solidarity Forum qualified the public relations exercise as “a stalling technique so that they [Israel] can continue with what they are doing: throwing Palestinians off their land, building walls, continuing human rights abuses” (“South Africa highlights Israeli apartheid,” Press TV, 9 March 2012). Continue reading
[The Israeli protests in recent weeks has taken many by surprise, and some have gleaned a hopeful nascent class struggle from the events. But the protests have barred any involvement by those who challenge the Zionist ethnic cleansing of Palestinians, the settlement/displacement programs, the Israeli apartheid wall/checkpoints/laws and restrictions, and the long-murderous attacks on Gaza, as well as the absurd notion of a “Jewish state” making pretenses of an “inclusive democracy.” Indeed, growing numbers are recognizing that the protests are really over a better division of the spoils of war and occupation–and of the largesse of the US, which pays for much of the unending assault on Palestine. — Frontlines ed.]
By Greg Burris
17 September 2011
The Electronic Intifada
No one could have ever predicted that a single act of protest — the self-immolation of a desperate Tunisian street vendor — would unleash a tidal wave of collective resistance and rebellion throughout North Africa and the Middle East, threatening to topple regimes that had long been considered permanent political players.
But perhaps the most surprising outcome of this regional groundswell of protest was to be seen in Israel where Jewish protesters held up placards and shouted slogans declaring that the revolutionary spirit of Cairo’s Tahrir Square had come to the streets of Tel Aviv. The Arab Spring, it seems, has turned into the Israeli Summer. Continue reading