ISRAEL/PALESTINE: A history of abuse and war crimes

Our work on Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories, albeit sometimes unpopular, drives home the complexities of a region that has been in conflict for at least half a century.

Looking back into our digital archives shows hundreds of reports, urgent actions, press releases, public statements, positions, questions and answers, videos and stories.

Each report has its own recommendations and approaches to protecting the rights of civilians. Sometimes the recommendations fall on Israel, sometimes Palestinian authorities and sometimes the armed wing of groups like Hamas.

The fact is that almost all parties stand accused of human rights abuses and war crimes.

Our 2015 report ‘Strangling Necks’ catalogues the abductions, torture and summary executions carried out by the armed wing of Hamas during Israel’s 50-day military offensive in 2014.

Our latest work: Ending support of illegal settlements

Israeli settlements in Palestinian territory are almost universally recognized as illegal. The settlements themselves fuel war crimes and a cause of significant human rights abuses against Palestinians.

After 50 years of illegal settlements it is time to do more than just condemn the settlements.

Israel, encouraged by recent US rhetoric, announced 6,219 new housing units in the occupied West Bank and a new settlement north-east of Ramallah in early 2017.

Settlements are subsidized by the Israeli government, but they also run off the goods that are manufactured in them. Settlements use land, water and minerals illegally taken from Palestinian territory to create goods that end up on the international market.

Australia must not support illegal settlements

We know that the settlements are illegal. And we know that they are sustained by the taking of resources and the manufacturing of goods from Palestinian territory. And we know that Australia imported $952 million from Israel in 2015-16.

There is no data on whether any Australian imports have come from illegal Israeli settlements.

This is why we are calling for the Australia to clarify whether any existing imports have originated in the illegal settlements and ban products coming from the settlements.

After five decades of Israel’s occupation of the West Bank, including East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip, it is time for the world’s governments to do more than just issue condemnations.

It is time to take step to end the complicit economic support — of purchasing imports from and investing in — corporations that operate in illegal settlements.

Our next move

Amnesty International will continue to monitor and report on human rights abuses in Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories. And stand up for civilians, regardless of which party is responsible for the violence.

Read our press release and full public statement calling for state divestment of Israeli settlements and the full catalogue of our work on this region since 1974.