Five Years of IIlegality: Time to dismantle the wall and respect the rights of Palestinians | West Bank

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After five years of illegality, it is time to dismantle the Wall and respect the rights of Palestinians.In an advisory opinion, rendered on 9 July 2004, the International Court of Justice stated that Israel's construction of the Wall in the occupied Palestinian Territory was illegal and called for its immediate dismantling. Five years later, the advisory opinion has been met only by inaction: Israel continues constructing the Wall and the international community remains silent. Oxfam International underscores the urgency of addressing this situation in a compilation of testimonies that is published today. In this report, Five years of illegality, Oxfam International presents testimonies of fifteen Palestinian men and women who recount their daily problems, arising from the construction of the Wall and its associated regime of land confiscation and permits, and the construction and expansion of settlements. In this report, Oxfam International calls on the international community to effectively challenge the construction of the Wall in occupied territory and its associated regime, together with the construction of settlements and the confiscation and control of natural resources (land and water), which all de facto contribute to the altering of the demographic composition of the occupied Palestinian Territory and are in violation of international humanitarian law.
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  Five years of illegality. Time to dismantle the Wall and respect the rights of Palestinians.  © Oxfam International July 2009 The articles in this publication were written by Valérie Féron, journalist. The publication is based upon field research conducted du-ring May 2009. The articles reflect the views and perception of the people interviewed. It is part of a series of reports written to inform public debate on development and humani-tarian policy issues. The text may be used free of charge for the purposes of advocacy, campaigning, education, and research, provided that the source is acknowledged in full. The copy-right holder requests that all such use be registered with them for impact assessment purposes. The text may be used free of charge for the purposes of advocacy. E-mail publish@oxfam.org.ukFor further information on the issues raised in this paper please e-mail:advocacy@oxfaminternational.org The information in this publication is correct at the time of going to press. Photos:  Tineke D’haese Graphic design:  Oxfam-Wereldwinkels vzw Disclaimer These articles were written by Valérie Féron,  journalist. The views expressed in these ar-ticles are those of the interviewees and do not necessarily represent the views of Ox-fam International. n O xfam International has been working in the occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel since the 1980s. Along with 27 Pa-lestinian partner organisations in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, Oxfam works on agricultural development, food security, and microfinance; emergency and primary health care; water, sewage, and public health; pro-tection of civilians, human rights, and rights of women, refugees, and workers. In Israel, Oxfam supports 25 partner organisations. Oxfam partners in Israel work to counter oc-cupation and to promote a just, sustainable peace between Israelis and Palestinians. Based on Oxfam’s first-hand experience, we are concerned about the increase in poverty and suffering for Palestinians. Oxfam belie-ves that all people in the Middle East region should be free from violence, coercion, and deprivation. Ensuring these basic rights for ordinary women, men, and children is fun-damental to the success of any peace pro-cess. Oxfam is against the use of violence against civilians in any form and calls on all parties to protect civilians from harm. Oxfam’s analysis of the Israeli–Palestinian conflict and its eventual resolution is rooted in international humanitarian law and human rights principles. Based on these principles, Oxfam seeks a just and lasting solution, in which both Palestinians and Israelis will en- joy human security and peace. Oxfam be-lieves that the international community has a legal and moral responsibility to engage effectively in resolving this conflict. n 2 - Five years of illegality The term ‘Wall’ was used by the International Court of Justice in its advisory opinion on the Wall and is therefore the terminology used throughout this publication. An exception is the interview with UN OCHA: this is because the UN Secretariat (the Secretary-General’s Office) uses the term ‘barrier’, since neither ‘wall’ nor ‘fence’ are complete descriptions given that in some places the structure is actually a wall and in other places it is a fence. Photo cover: Playing children in front of the Wall in Abu Dis. Photo back: Almond farmer in a village in Jenin area.  Table of contents Editorial 5Map of the West Bank (OCHA) 6General terminology and history 7The Wall and the ICJ advisory opinion 8About the Wall 10Stories 12  n  Aida refugee camp 12 n  Al-Walaja 13 n  Bethlehem 14 n  Beit Jala 15 n  Jayyous 16 n  Azzun Atmeh 18 n  Ni’lin et Bil’in 20 n  Hizma 22 n  Marda 23 n  Immatin 24 n  Al-Khan Al-Ahmar 25 n  Al Quds University, Abu Dis 26Interview: Allegra Pacheco (OCHA) 28Oxfam International contacts 30 Five years of illegality - 3  1 - Cinq ans d’illegalité
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