By Palestine Chronicle Staff
The Palestinian Human Rights Organisations Council (PHROC) has strongly condemned “the refusal by Israeli authorities to grant a work permit to Omar Shakir, Human Rights Watch Israel and Palestine director.”
PHROC added, “The refusal reflects a larger policy of repression of human rights work by Israeli authorities through movement restrictions, arbitrary arrests, travel bans, and denial of entry.”
PHROC notated it “stands in solidarity with Human Rights Watch and calls for the protection of human rights work, the freedom of movement for human rights staff, and an immediate end to repression and that serves to inhibit vital human rights work in Palestine, Israel and globally.”
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PHROC concluded that “In recent months, Palestinian, Israeli and international organizations have come under increased pressure from Israel for their reporting on Israel’s human rights violations. This includes a series of smear campaigns and the passage of a Knesset law in July of 2016 that obliges nongovernmental organizations to report on their foreign funding, with fines reaching about 7,000 USD for non-compliance.”
Israel has denied Omar Shakir, the Israel/Palestine director for Human Rights Watch a work permit, citing HRW ‘bias’ against Israel, a claim HRW rejects.