65 Organizations Call on New UN Human Rights Chief to Prioritize Palestine

Volker Türk is the new UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. (Photo: Jean Marc Ferré, via UNHCR Website)

Dozens of Palestinian and international organizations have called on the new UN human rights chief to prioritize the human rights situation in Palestine.

In a letter on Monday, the organizations welcomed new United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk, who officially began his new role that day.

Among the 65 signatories were the Palestinian prisoners’ rights group Addameer and legal NGO Al-Haq, in addition to Jewish Voice for Peace and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign in the UK.

“The Palestinian people [have been] denied their right to self-determination, they have been enduring over seven decades of Israel’s settler-colonialism and apartheid, and 55 years of belligerent occupation,” the organizations wrote.

“Gaza residents [have been] surviving in near-unliveable circumstances for 15 years, and Palestinian refugees [are] unable to exercise their right of return.”

The groups said they want the human rights situation in Palestine to be at the top of Türk’s agenda.

“For far too long, the question of Palestine has been treated as an exception to the implementation of international law,” they added.

The letter raised Israel’s use of administrative detention against Palestinians, which allows it to jail detainees indefinitely without charge.

Moreover, the letter addressed the 5,330 Palestinians killed by Israel’s “five full-scale military offensives” in Gaza between 2008 and 2022. It also drew attention to the recent increase in its military incursions into occupied West Bank cities.

(The New Arab, PC, SOCIAL)

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