Toolkit: Responding to the Crisis Unfolding in Gaza

Thousands of civilians have been killed in the escalation of violence in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Israel since October 2023. As the world watches in horror, Amnesty International has been documenting human rights violations. Amnesty’s researchers and Digital Evidence Lab have been verifying evidence of violations of international humanitarian law, like repeated attacks by the Israeli Defence Forces that amount to war crimes and have pulverised street after street, killing tens of thousands of civilians.

And alongside members of the Palestinian and Jewish communities, we’re campaigning for a ceasefire and the protection of civilians. At this moment, as we witness an unprecedented catastrophe in Gaza, the actions and advocacy of everyone are critical. It’s because of everyday people standing up for human rights that the Australian government has called for a ceasefire. There’s more to do, but together, we can do it.

What needs to be done?

Amnesty International is also calling on all parties to abide by international law, and make every effort to avoid civilian bloodshed. Neither justice nor security can be achieved by a civilian bloodbath in Gaza. Amnesty International is urging:

  • An end to unlawful attacks, including indiscriminate attacks, direct attacks on civilians and civilian objects, and disproportionate attacks.
  • Israel to immediately allow unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid into the occupied Gaza Strip and to lift its 16-year illegal blockade on Gaza, and grant immediate access to independent investigators.
  • The international community to impose a comprehensive arms embargo on all parties to the conflict given that serious violations amounting to crimes under international law are being committed.
  • The International Criminal Court’s ongoing investigation into the situation of Palestine to proceed and to receive full support and all necessary resources.
  • Hamas and all other armed groups to release unconditionally and immediately all civilian hostages and to treat all those being held captive humanely, including by providing medical treatment, pending their release.
  • Israel to release all Palestinians who are arbitrarily detained.
  • The root causes of the conflict to be addressed, including through dismantling Israel’s system of apartheid against all Palestinians.

What can you do?

1. Get Informed and Share Knowledge


Driven by the collective power of people taking to the streets, signing petitions, sending emails and calling politicians, the Australian government strengthened their position and supported a United Nations General Assembly resolution calling for a ceasefire in December 2023. They have since reiterated their support for a sustained ceasefire.

The government has also consistently called for the protection of civilians and the respect of international humanitarian law. However, in February 2024 the government suspended funding to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the largest humanitarian organisation in Gaza, days after the International Court of Justice ruled that the survival of Palestinians in Gaza is at risk. This inhumane decision will deal a devastating blow to more than two million refugees in the occupied Gaza Strip who depend on UNRWA for survival.

However, we support the government’s discussion to reinstate funding to UNRWA, marking a positive change. Moving forward, it’s crucial to ensure continued support for UNRWA and safeguard its funding to prevent future attacks on vital humanitarian assistance.

The Australian government has also failed to address the root causes of this violence including Israel’s system of apartheid imposed on the Palestinian people. The root cause lies in the refusal of the international community to condemn Israeli abuses, hold them accountable, and address the systemic issues perpetuating the conflict. The Australian government has not acknowledged that Israel has committed war crimes during its campaign in Gaza, despite an abundance of evidence from Amnesty and other organisations.

The government has approved two permits for defence goods to be exported to Israel since 7 October 2024. Australia’s opaque defence goods approval process means we don’t know if goods manufactured in Australia are being used by the Israeli Defence Forces. This has to change.

Amnesty has warned of the risk of genocide in Gaza due to the shockingly high death toll among Palestinians, the widespread destruction caused by Israel’s relentless bombardment and the deliberate denial of humanitarian aid as part of the ongoing illegal blockade, all of which are inflicting horrifying levels of suffering on Gaza’s civilian population. Other warning signs include the increase in racist and dehumanising rhetoric by some Israeli government officials, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Israel’s history of oppressing and discriminating against Palestinians under its system of apartheid. The International Court of Justice ruled in February 2024 that the risk of genocide is real and imminent. All states including Australia are under an obligation under international law to act to prevent genocide. That includes not allowing arms or arm parts manufactured in Australia to be used by the Israeli Defence Forces.

Rather, the international community allows Israel to commit war crimes and the crime of apartheid with impunity which leads to repeated cycles of violence and the increased repression of the Palestinian people and their human rights.

The Albanese government’s support for a ceasefire shows what is possible when we stand up for human rights. Together, if we take action, we can ensure the Australian government consistently reiterates their support for a ceasefire, protects funding for UNRWA, and stops approving the export of defence goods to Israel.


  • Read our Combat Misinformation Resource to understand the current situation. This resource includes a section on debunking myths and practical ways to apply this knowledge in your online and offline activities.
  • Follow our social media for real-time updates: Instagram, X (Twitter) and Facebook.


Amplifying lived experience voices can be a transformative way to create empathy and understanding. Share the stories of Palestinians and those affected by the crisis in Gaza on your social media platforms. Amnesty International has gathered first-hand testimonies from individuals enduring the crisis. Please, share these people’s stories on your social media so that your friends and family know what is happening in Gaza right now.

Follow the voices of Sara Saleh, Randa Abdel Fattah, Fahad Ali, and many more Palestinians you can find here who are sharing their experiences and raising awareness. Ensure that you continue to engage with these voices beyond a single post. Share updates on their experiences, highlight their progress and regularly check in to show your support.


To be effective advocates, it’s crucial to educate ourselves about the Gaza crisis and its root causes. Amnesty International can be a source of information, but we also want to provide you with additional resources from other organisations. While we share these external resources, please note that Amnesty International may not endorse everything shared on these platforms. These organisations include:

  • APAN (Australia Palestine Advocacy Network): APAN is a leading Australian organization dedicated to advocating for justice and human rights in Palestine. Visit their website for reports, webinars, and updates on the Gaza crisis.
  • Eyes on Palestine: This platform provides a unique perspective on the Palestinian situation through art, culture, and multimedia projects. It offers a different way to understand the impact of the crisis.
  • Stand With Palestine (Australia): This Australia-specific website offers a range of resources, including information on where to donate, how to contact your MPs, events across Australia, and legal aid support for the Gaza crisis.
  • Palestinians Sharing Their Stories: Listening to the voices of Palestinians living through the crisis is an essential aspect of understanding the situation. Explore personal testimonies and experiences shared by Palestinians here.
  • Loud Jew Collective: This organisation includes Jewish voices against oppression and for justice in Palestine. Their resources offer insights into the perspectives of Jews supporting the Palestinian cause.
  • Jews Against Fascism: This group advocates for human rights and justice, particularly in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Their materials provide an alternative viewpoint within the Jewish community.
  • Jews Against the Occupation: This organisation advocates for a just and equitable resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Their resources provide alternative viewpoints within the Jewish community.
  • The Jewish Council of Australia: The Jewish Council of Australia provides an independent, expert Jewish voice opposing antisemitism & racism and supporting Palestinian freedom & justice


As an ally, one of the most powerful things you can do is have conversations with friends, family and your neighbours. By speaking out, you can allow others to learn, reflect and act. You’re also standing up for what you believe in – empathy, compassion and fairness. It’s virtual that we build up mass support around our campaigns, and face-to-face conversations are still one of the most effective ways of doing this. Check out our resource on how to have structured conversations on campaigns.

2. Take Direct Action

As the people of Gaza face relentless bombardment, death, and destruction, the Australian government must stop approving defence export permits to Israel. In recent years, Australia has approved hundreds of permits for defence goods to be sent to Israel. The lack of transparency in Australia’s defence export policy means we don’t know exactly what was approved for export, but we know the government must not allow arms manufactured in Australia to be used by the Israeli Defence Forces Take the actions below today and call for Australia to not allow arms to be sent to Israel:

BECOME A GAZA REPRESENTATIVE Make an impact and join the movement in your region!

In the face of ongoing human rights violations and violence in Gaza, the need for dedicated activists has never been more critical. We’re on the lookout for dedicated activists across Australia to step up as Gaza Regional Representatives. Your mission? To be the driving force behind organising and mobilising efforts in your region. Some of the things you can do include being the point of contact for protests, rallying people for webinars and events, and collaborating with stakeholders and Palestinians on the ground to make a tangible difference.

Express your interest and join the movement here. Be part of the change! Note: Your dedication is what shapes our impact. Tell us what you want to work on, and let’s make a difference together.

We encourage autonomy with Gaza actions, but as a Gaza Regional Representative, some of the things coming up include:

  • 🌐 Weekly/Fortnightly Ground Events: Collaborate with groups like APAN for sustained impact.
  • 🌍 Support Palestine-Led Actions: Be a voice for justice.

Please email if you have any questions or need information.


Showing up and standing in solidarity with those directly affected by the crisis is a powerful way to lend your support. Your presence at rallies and vigils organised by Palestinians and the Jewish community members sends a clear message of unity and compassion and a show of power. Together, we can amplify the call for peace and an end to civilian suffering in Gaza.

Protests are an important way in which people can speak the truth to those in power and also show solidarity for those who can’t speak their truth to power. We need your support now more than ever to stand in solidarity with the people of Gaza and to call for a ceasefire by all parties to end civilian suffering in Gaza!

You can find all the upcoming events, rallies and solidarity vigils by typing your postcode in the map below. This gets updated weekly but if you have an event coming up or we are missing something email to get it added to the map.

You can find all the upcoming events, rallies and solidarity vigils by typing your postcode in the map below or on the Events List on the APAN Website. We try to update this weekly but if you have an event coming up or we are missing something email to get it added to the map.


Some protests will be much safer than others, for example, those which are overtly family-friendly. If you’re not sure what to expect, contact the organisers to get more information.

If there is a possibility that the situation could become dangerous, there are ways you can be prepared to make sure you stay safe.

  1. Know your rights: You have a right to peacefully assemble, a right to privacy and a right to protest. If you get injured, you have the right to receive medical care. Police must avoid the use of force.
  2. Plan ahead: Find out where the protest is taking place and look for information about what to expect. Make a plan with your friends in case your group gets separated.
  3. Wear protective clothing: You may need clothing that covers all your skin to protect you from exposure to sun and pepper spray. Bring shatter-resistant eye protection like sunglasses or swim goggles and a bandana soaked in water, lemon juice or vinegar that you can wear over your nose and mouth.
  4. Pack emergency supplies: Bring a basic first-aid kit, water that you can use to clean your eyes and face, identification, enough cash for a pay-phone call and transport and a fresh set of clothes.


Human Rights Observers play a vital role in ensuring that people are safe and that the right to protest is upheld in Australia. As part of the Protect the Protest Campaign, we will be relaunching our Human Rights Observer Program in 2024. If this is something that interests you, fill out this Human Rights Observer Expression of Interest and we will get in touch with you early next year.


A face-to-face meeting with your MP is a powerful way to get your voice heard and represented. You can request a meeting with your MP on your own, with a small group of like-minded people in your local community, or as part of an Amnesty Action Group, if there is one in your area.

There are 120 Amnesty action groups covering the majority of electorates around the country. For Amnesty action groups, having an ongoing relationship with your local MP is critical.

As an Amnesty action group, you have the power of representing all the Amnesty supporters in your community which may make your MP more willing to meet with you. If you would like to know how many Amnesty supporters are in your electorate please contact

Send a request to your MP by email first. You can follow up with a phone call if you don’t hear back within a week. Here is a guide on how to request a meeting and engage with the MP.


Another way you can engage with your MP is by phoning their office. MPs rely on this as one way of knowing the level of support an issue has in their electorate. It only takes a few phone calls for them to notice there is support for an issue. If you can coordinate with others to phone their office and call for a ceasefire they will take note. Keep in mind that through this method you most likely won’t get to speak with the MP. You will most likely speak with a staff member or leave a voicemail. It’s simple to do, only takes a few minutes, and makes a big difference.

Here are some key talking points to include:

  • Immediate Ceasefire:
    • I am calling because I strongly support Amnesty International’s call for an immediate and sustained ceasefire in the conflict between Israel and Hamas.
    • Civilians are facing unprecedented danger, and each passing day worsens the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza.
  • Documented War Crimes:
    • I am deeply concerned about the evidence of war crimes documented by Amnesty International, involving all parties in the conflict.
    • Civilians in Gaza are experiencing a dire situation, and urgent action is needed to prevent further loss of life.
  • Humanitarian Aid Access:
    • I urge [MP’s Name] to advocate for Israel to allow unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid into the occupied Gaza Strip.
    • It is essential to lift the 16-year illegal blockade on Gaza, granting immediate access to independent investigators.
  • Comprehensive Arms Embargo:
    • Australia needs to push for a comprehensive arms embargo on all parties involved in the conflict, considering the severe violations amounting to crimes under international law.
  • Support ICC Investigation:
    • Amnesty International calls for full support for the International Criminal Court’s ongoing investigation into the situation in Gaza.
    • [MP’s Name] is crucial in ensuring this investigation proceeds with all necessary resources.
  • Release of Hostages and Detainees:
    • I call on [MP’s Name] to support the release of all civilian hostages held by armed groups and to ensure their humane treatment.
    • Additionally, Australia should advocate for the release of arbitrarily detained Palestinians.
  • Address Root Causes:
    • Amnesty International urges [MP’s Name] to address the root causes of the conflict, including dismantling Israel’s system of apartheid against all Palestinians.

  • Practice what you want to say before calling.
  • Identify yourself as a local constituent (and a supporter of Amnesty International Australia if you wish).
  • Ask to leave a message for your local MP if you reach a staff member.
  • Explain why you are calling and outline your key concerns in a concise way.
  • Calling works if you don’t do it too often. If you haven’t heard anything from them for a week or two, follow up with another call to ask for an update.


Visit your MP’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts and engage with the MP by adding comments on their social posts. Staffers monitor these comments and report to the MPs. Avoid making angry posts and engage in a constructive manner.

Thank you for all your actions and continued support for our work! Together we can challenge injustice.