Wednesday, 29 November, 2006, marks the United Nations “International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People,” which was initiated in 1977 by the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in observance of the Palestinian people’s inalienable rights to independence and self-determination. The date also marks UNGA’s adoption of UN Resolution 181 in 1947, calling for the partition of British-mandate Palestine.
The Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy (MIFTAH) reaffirms, on this occasion, the need for international recognition and active support of the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people, most notably their human rights, their right to independence, and their right to social and economic development, among other basic principles enshrined in the United Nations Charter (October 1945) and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (December 1948).
Since the creation of the state of Israel in May 1948, 4.5 million Palestinians have been uprooted, displaced, and exiled, and 3.8 million others have languished under a brutal Israeli military occupation and a denial of their basic human rights in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.
The continued dual oppression of the Palestinian people, between exile and a systematic policy of Israeli strangulation inside the occupied Palestinian territories, calls for an immediate international effort to resolve the Palestinian-Israeli conflict on the basis of existing legal foundations; namely UN Resolutions 242, 338, 194 and the land-for-peace equation initially adopted in the Madrid Peace Conference of October 1991.
In recent years, particularly since the outbreak of the Intifada in September 2000, Israel has subjected Palestinian civilians inside the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to a systematic policy of brutal military assaults, strangulation, deprivation of basic needs, and a continued campaign of suppression at the social, political, and economic levels.
Since 2000, Israeli military forces have killed approximately 4,570 Palestinians, including 943 children below the age of 18 and 281 women. 31,000 Palestinians have been injured as a result of Israeli military assaults, some with critical and irreversible disabilities.
MIFTAH urges the international community, at the Governmental and non-Governmental levels, to take a serious initiative aimed at ending the suffering of the Palestinian people, and pressure the Israeli Government to end its illegal occupation of the Palestinian territories captured in the June 1967 war; to dismantle Jewish settlements and the Annexation Wall on Palestinian land, to withdraw to the 1967 boundaries, to recognise the Palestinian refugees right of return, and to abide by its legal and political obligations under international and humanitarian law.