ELSC Newsletter: June
This month we share with you updates from our work around Europe. In Brussels, we sent a joint letter to the EU commission challenging the political instrumentalization of the controversial IHRA definition, in the UK we assisted students and academics to challenge repression when they speak up in defence of Palestinian rights and we challenged […]
22 Rights Groups Tell PayPal and Venmo to Shape Up Policies on Account Closures
Nearly two dozen rights groups, including the European Legal Support Center (ELSC) and our partner 7amleh, have joined together to tell PayPal and its subsidiary Venmo to shape up its policies on account freezes and closures.
Civil society letter to European Commission: counter political instrumentalization of antisemitism
Yesterday, 10 European NGOs and networks sent an open letter to the European Commission to raise concern about the political instrumentalization of the fight against antisemitism. The ELSC is one of the signatories.
Joint statement on censorship of Palestine campaigning in schools
Repression and censorship have increased as mobilization and protests for Palestinian rights in Europe have grown in the past few weeks. In the UK, children in schools were reprimanded, suspended or even excluded for speaking up about Palestine or showing solidarity through symbols associated with Palestine like flags. The ELSC signed this joint statement along with British organizations to ask the government of the UK to end its repressive policies against activism in schools.
ELSC Newsletter: May
This month we once again witnessed the brutal bombardment of Gaza and violent commission of human rights abuses by Israeli authorities and settlers. In a global response, communities worldwide rose in solidarity calling for freedom and justice in Palestine. Yet, this call was not without struggle as this month we share with you all too common stories of censorship and repression of Palestinian rights activists. We also share the news of a win in an EU court, part of the effort to stop trade with illegal settlements, as well as an update on the BT3P campaign challenging the German Bundestag’s anti-BDS motion.
ELSC Newsletter: April
This month, we have a few exciting victories for Palestinian rights advocacy. We recall an important success in The Netherlands, share with you a new report by Human Rights Watch detailing the crime of apartheid being committed by Israel against Palestinians, and report on the University of Toronto being censored for cancelling the employment of ELSC Advisory Board member Dr. Valentina Azarova for her human rights work.
Israeli Product Centre Fined for the Mislabelling of Products from the Occupied Palestinian Territory
On Friday 9 April, the Israeli Products Centre (IPC) based in Nijkerk, The Netherlands, received a fine of €2100 from the Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (NVWA) for mislabeling products originating in from Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt). The ELSC previously assisted the Dutch group docP who led a campaign for the IPC to correctly label products from the oPt, when they received a letter threatening legal action for their advocacy efforts. We welcome the decision of the NVWA as important signal showing that activists work for the respect of international law cannot be restricted by threats of legal action aimed at silencing Palestinian advocacy.
ELSC Newsletter: March
In this month’s newsletter, we share with you the release of the Jerusalem Declaration on Antisemitism, welcome a new member to the ELSC advisory board and highlight our 2021 work so far and how you can help to make this an important year for the protection of Palestinian rights advocacy in Europe. JERUSALEM DEFINITION ON […]
New Lawsuit against Denial of Public Space for Palestine-Related Event
In Germany, the campaigners Bundestag 3 for Palestine (BT3P) have initiated another strategic litigation. They are now challenging the city of Munich before the Administrative Court to be granted a public facility to host a panel discussion. The event is planned for 20 March to coincide with the Israeli Apartheid Week 2021. Judith Bernstein, Amir […]
Submission to the UN Special Rapporteur
The ELSC has welcomed the opportunity to make a submission to the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, Irene Khan, for her 2021 Human Rights Council report. The ELSC submission argued that the campaign initiated by the Israeli government and several politically motivated NGOs labelling the BDS movement and its supporters as inherently antisemitic amount to disinformation.
New legal brief finds HS2 Ltd. is permitted to excluded CAF from building UK’s high speed railway
A new legal brief produced jointly by the European Legal Support Center and Lawyers for Palestinian Human Rights has found that it is legal for HS2 Ltd – the company building the UK’s new high speed railway HS2 – to exclude from its procurement process companies which are complicit in ongoing breaches of international law, such as Spanish construction company Construcciones y Auxiliar de Ferrocarriles (CAF).
Join the Campaign “Facebook, we Need to Talk.”
More than 35 organisations and 31,000 signatories are already supporting the campaign “Facebook, we need to talk – and you’re not letting us.” calling the main social media platform to not add Zionist to its hate speech policy. Right now, Facebook is reaching out to stakeholders to ask if critical conversations that use the term “Zionist” fall within the rubric of hate speech as per Facebook’s Community Standards. Basically, Facebook is assessing if “Zionist” is being used as a proxy for “Jewish people or Israelis” in attacks on its platform.
31 Human Rights Organisations, Networks & Trade Unions Demand CAF be included in UN Settlement Database
31 prominent human rights organisations, networks and trade unions from Palestine and Europe have submitted a report to the OHCHR demanding that CAF be included in the UN database of businesses involved in Israel’s illegal settlement enterprise for its role in expanding and operating Israel’s Jerusalem Light Rail (JLR).
We are suing the German Bundestag over its 2019 anti-BDS motion
The ELSC has been assisting lawyer Ahmed Abed who is representing three plaintiffs in a lawsuit brought before the Administrative Court of Berlin challenging the lawfulness of the anti-BDS motion passed by the German Bundestag on 17 May 2019.
Best Quotes of the Milestone Judgement for the Right to Boycott
Thursday 11 June 2020 marked a decisive victory for freedom of expression of Palestinian rights defenders in Europe. The European Court of Human Rights Court (ECtHR) rendered its judgement, unanimously ruling that the French highest court’s criminal conviction of BDS activists campaigning for a boycott of Israeli products violated their freedom of expression, protected by […]
Joint Open Letter to the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court: Time to Investigate Crimes in Palestine, Time for Justice
Along with 180 civil society coalitions and organisations, ELSC signed the Open Letter that was submitted to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, on 29 April. We express our strong support for the opening of an investigation into Israeli war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, which was initiated by Bensouda in December.