The voluntary associations, humanitarian, political, religious and cultural organisations who have signed this document, in respect of the values enshrined in our Constitution and the Charter of International Rights
DENOUNCE AND DEMAND
an end to the denigrating media campaign carried out against those who, holding international institutional roles or being members of non-governmental organisations, have dared to bring to the general attention, the role and repressive policies of the government of Israel towards the Palestinian people.
It is not as of today that the worst right-wing, colonialist and racist Zionism, now firmly in power in Israel, rages against anyone who dares to question the democracy of the State of Israel, which, in reality, has nothing to do with the democratic and anti-Zionist Jewish people living inside and outside those territories.
The infamous accusations of anti-Semitism, used by the leaders and supporters of the Zionist movement against the UN special rapporteur for the occupied territories, the Italian lawyer Francesca Albanese, and against Dr. Tina Marinari, campaigns coordinator for Amnesty International Italy, defender of International and Democratic Law, offend above all the Jewish religious sentiment of that people.
The accusation: having documented and denounced the policies used to impose the military occupation of the land of Palestine. This policy is however confirmed daily by the indiscriminate use of all the coercive means that each army of occupation has always deployed to impose the will of the invaders on the invaded, and by the apartheid regime that oppresses the Palestinian people.
It is from the columns of Il Giornale (italian newspaper) of 18 April 2023 that Fiamma Nirenstein, who has never concealed her right-wing political sympathies, accuses Francesca Albanese of anti-Semitism, explicitly asking the UN for her dismissal, arguing that the Israeli army has been there since 1967 to defend from Arab ‘terrorists’ the sacrosanct ‘right’ of the settlers to take back (after 2000 years…) the land that belongs to them by divine will, because that is how it is written in the Bible.
Fiamma Nirenstein makes the case for censorship made at the UN by the “four thousand lawyers of the International Legal Forum”. An organisation based in Tel Aviv, with branches in many Western countries. A denigrating intervention also reinforced by the statements by the Israeli Minister for Diaspora Affairs and Anti-Semitism, Amichai Chikli, who claims that “allowing Ms. Albanese to continue to spread hate, anti-Semitism and incitement to violence, does not fulfil its mandate to protect the fundamental human rights of all and to exercise equal treatment for all member states’. Hence the alleged necessity of the removal of Francesca Albanese, requested in a letter addressed to UN Secretary General António Guterres and UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk (Jerusalem Post, 19 April 2023).
The instrumental use of the accusation of anti-Semitism, and in particular of the immense tragedy of the Holocaust that involved the entire Jewish people, is not based on any evidence, and has the sole political function of wanting to disguise, by discrediting, the colonial and systematic apartheid that the State of Israel applies to the Palestinian people, with a dangerous escalation, attributable to the current extreme right-wing government, which is risking of seriously endangering Israel’s very existence.
Suffice it to observe the increase in incidents of violence that have occurred in recent days on the occasion of Easter, including against Orthodox Christian minorities and against Christian minorities, violence widely denounced by Mgr. Pierbattista Pizzaballa, Patriarch of Jerusalem.
The attack on Francesca Albanese and Tina Marinari is unacceptable to us, especially because of the importance of the organisations to which they belong, aimed at defending International Law – the UN – and active in the humanitarian and democratic field – Amnesty International. All our respect goes to these organisations.
A respect that, conversely, the State of Israel has never shown, as is confirmed not only by Israel’s failure to implement the countless UN resolutions against the policy of colonial expansion, but also by the continuous violation of International Law, also vilified through the systematic preventive bombardment of a sovereign state like Syria, without even the political dignity of declaring war, but with coward and reckless aggression.
The truth is that, after years of research, work, analysis, both the Apartheid Report by Amnesty International, presented by Dr Tina Marinari, and the one produced for the UN by Francesca Albanese, have highlighted that the Israeli authorities must be called to account for the crime of apartheid against the Palestinians.
The massive requisitions of land and property, illegal killings, forced relocations, drastic restrictions on movement and the denial of nationality and citizenship to the Palestinians, highlight Israel’s system of oppression and domination of the Palestinian population. They are acts that fuel a system that, under international law, constitutes apartheid, and which, according to Amnesty International, is based “on human rights violations” and, therefore, is a crime against humanity; so defined by the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and the Apartheid Convention.
The UN Charter speaks clearly, also stating that any people, including the Palestinian people, has the right to resist a foreign invasion and that it cannot be the invader the one who decides what resistance is legitimate, starting with the non-violent one of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) promoted by civil society.
That is why the time has come for not only the media, but all the democratic society, to open their eyes to the truth and act so that the abuses stop as soon as possible. A stop that can only happen if the rights of the Palestinian people are recognised and practised, including the right of return of refugees, just as those of the Israeli people are recognised.