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Panel Discussion: The Palestinian Refugee Crisis
Jan 22, 2021 at 09:00 PM
January 25, 2021
11:00 am to 12:30 pm (EST)
 
The Palestinian refugee situation, which emerged from events surrounding the State of Israel’s birth over seventy years ago, remains one of the largest and most protracted refugee crises of the post-Second World War era. The Global Migration Lab (GML) Student Research Initiative will hold a panel discussion featuring authors Francesca Albanese and Dr. Lex Takkenberg to mark the publication of the second edition of their book, Palestinian Refugees in International Law.
The discussion will address some background of the crisis and the status of the refugees today, the role of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the nature of Western governments’ involvement, and finally, potential durable solutions to the crisis.
 
This is the link to the event registration: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_WUTjHQmHSIid9jjn2qv_0Q
 
Co-hosted by Global Migration Lab, Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, and Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy, University of Toronto
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Israel discriminates against Palestinians by not providing accurate COVID-19 info in Arabic
Jan 12, 2021 at 12:00 AM

Despite having one of the most successful vaccine roll outs in the world, rights groups have accused Israel of discriminating against its Palestinian communities by failing to provide accurate information regarding COVID-19 and the vaccine in Arabic.

As countries around the world continue to vaccinate their populations against COVID-19, the coronavirus continues to rage in Palestine, where the prospect of getting vaccinated still remains a mere fantasy for many. 

Palestinian officials continue to enforce partial lockdowns across the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, where hundreds of new cases of the virus are reported every single day. 

Since the pandemic began, health officials in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt) have recorded over 167,000 cases of the virus, and 1,784 deaths. 

Of the total recorded cases, the number of active cases in the oPt stands just under 17,000. In the past 24 hours, health officials recorded close to 800 new cases of the virus and 16 deaths.

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Jews Against Zionism: From Bund to Satmar to Now
Jan 12, 2021 at 02:26 PM

Challenging the IHRA re-definition of antisemitism that anti-Zionism is antisemitism.

Free Webinar presentation on Zoom

Thursday January 14, 2021 3PM EST PM online

Moderated by Fabienne Presentey, IJV-Montreal
Présentation en anglais, questions-réponses en français et en anglais
Presentation in English, Q&A in French and English
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A regime of Jewish supremacy from the Jordan River to the Mediterranean Sea: This is apartheid
Jan 12, 2021 at 01:06 PM

More than 14 million people, roughly half of them Jews and the other half Palestinians, live between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea under a single rule. The common perception in public, political, legal and media discourse is that two separate regimes operate side by side in this area, separated by the Green Line. One regime, inside the borders of the sovereign State of Israel, is a permanent democracy with a population of about nine million, all Israeli citizens. The other regime, in the territories Israel took over in 1967, whose final status is supposed to be determined in future negotiations, is a temporary military occupation imposed on some five million Palestinian subjects.

Over time, the distinction between the two regimes has grown divorced from reality. This state of affairs has existed for more than 50 years – twice as long as the State of Israel existed without it. Hundreds of thousands of Jewish settlers now reside in permanent settlements east of the Green Line, living as though they were west of it. East Jerusalem has been officially annexed to Israel’s sovereign territory, and the West Bank has been annexed in practice. Most importantly, the distinction obfuscates the fact that the entire area between the Mediterranean Sea and the Jordan River is organized under a single principle: advancing and cementing the supremacy of one group – Jews – over another – Palestinians. All this leads to the conclusion that these are not two parallel regimes that simply happen to uphold the same principle. There is one regime governing the entire area and the people living in it, based on a single organizing principle.

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Israel rebuffs WHO vaccine request for Palestinian medics, amid outcry over disparity
Jan 11, 2021 at 12:00 AM

Citing shortages, Israel declines informal plea to make jabs available for Palestinian frontline workers to avert health disaster during the month-long wait for vaccines

Israel has refused an informal request from the World Health Organisation (WHO) to immediately make Covid-19 vaccines available to Palestinian medical workers to avert a health disaster, citing shortages of the jabs for their own citizens.

The refusal comes amid growing criticism from rights groups of the massive discrepancy between the vaccine rollout in Israel and the occupied West Bank and Gaza, given Israel’s legal obligations as an occupying power. The Israeli government has said it is not aware of any request either formal or informal about the subject.

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Federal judge faces possible removal over accusations he interfered in U of T hiring
Jan 11, 2021 at 12:00 AM

The Canadian Judicial Council has ordered a panel to review complaints that a federal tax court judge pressured the University of Toronto’s law school not to hire a prominent academic as director of the International Human Rights Program.

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Canadian Judicial Council constitutes Review Panel in the matter involving the Honourable D.E. Spiro
Jan 11, 2021 at 12:00 AM

The Canadian Judicial Council announced today the referral of a matter involving the Honourable Justice D.E. Spiro to a Review Panel.  Under Council’s By-laws, a Judicial Conduct Review Panel may be established when it is determined that a complaint might be serious enough to warrant the removal of the judge. 

In this instance, the Honourable Associate Chief Justice Kenneth G Nielsen, Vice-Chair of the Judicial Conduct Committee has decided to constitute a Review Panel in respect of complaints filed relating to the judge’s alleged interference in the appointment of a Director of the International Human Rights Program at the University of Toronto.

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Defending Apartheid
Jan 09, 2021 at 12:00 AM

In 2017 the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) issued a report on the conditions of Palestinians under Israeli rule. The report covered the situations of both Palestinian citizens of Israel and the subject population in the Occupied Territories. The report concluded “Israel has established an apartheid regime that dominates the Palestinian people as a whole.”

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CBC still reviewing why it deleted the word ‘Palestine’
Jan 08, 2021 at 12:00 AM

The CBC’s censorship of the word "Palestine" had the unintended result of shining a spotlight on this decades-old erasure of Palestinian national identity in both the Canadian media and government.

Last summer’s fiasco at Canada’s national broadcaster, when the CBC censured the word “Palestine,” has brought continued focus to the debate over bias in North American media. According to the Ombudsman’s website, he is still working on cases from July, 2020. When a decision is made, the results will be made public.

Some brief background: On August 18, 2020 Duncan McCue, the host of the CBC show “The Current,” used the word “Palestine” in an interview with cartoonist and journalist Joe Sacco. Later that day the word was cut from the online transcript of the show and the following day on August 19 McCue issued an onair apology for using “Palestine” instead of “Palestinian territories.” The journalist had originally said “In so much of your work, context is key — whether it’s Palestine, or whether it’s Bosnia. In this book when you’re asking the Dene about their history…” In the revised transcript the CBC published deleted the clause about Palestine, posting: “In so much of your work, context is key. In this book when you’re asking the Dene about their history…” In his apology, McCue told listeners, “Yesterday, in my interview with Joe Sacco, I referred to the Palestinian territories as Palestine. We apologize.”

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Facts and Figures about the Current Darkness in the Gaza Strip

January 23rd 2008

Report from the Palestinian Hydrology Group
  1. Gaza Strip today is facing a very harsh siege which is expected to have severely negative humanitarian impact.
  2. The distribution of drinking water and the collection and treatment of wastewater completely rely on electricity and fuel in Gaza Strip.
  3. For several months now Israel has imposed a cruel siege on the Strip preventing people and goods from free movement. This has immobilized the importing of spare parts, pumps, pipes and other necessary accessories for the water and sanitation providing facilities.
  4. According to different sources the water and sanitation services are expected to be completely paralyzed within a matter of hours due to the lack of fuel reserves.
  5. About 133 water wells are being used for domestic purposes in addition to 33 sewage pump stations and three treatment plants; 10 of these groundwater wells function using fuel while the rest rely on electricity. Diesel powered generators are normally used as backup for the whole system but only for a limited time.
    The Coastal Municipalities Water Utility needs at least 100,000 liters of diesel per month to operate the water system. An additional 100,000 liters of diesel per month are needed for the sewage system to prevent wastewater from flooding the streets and residential areas.
  6. Reducing electricity and fuel supplies are potential causes to trigger an environmental crisis especially in the wastewater pump stations and treatment plants. If wastewater is not treated it will have to be pumped directly to the sea. This will for sure have a direct and negative impact on the groundwater aquifer and marine life.
    During winter time sewage pumps need to operate about 24 hours per day due to rainfall. Therefore, interruptions in fuel and electricity supply would be particularly significant.
  7. The sewage treatment plant in Beit Lahiya is also vulnerable to interruptions in electricity supplies. The treatment lagoons must be pumped regularly, or else the 10,000 people living in the area are in danger.  Six months ago, one of the lagoons over flooded and caused the death of five persons. Proper maintenance could have prevented the disaster.
  8. The water supply in Gaza City, with a total of 600,000 residents, in addition to a major part of the central portion of the Strip is expected to be completely cut-off as a result of ceasing the pumping from the municipal groundwater wells. The City also faces the threat of overflowing wastewater since the pumps (especially Al Samer and Aqoola stations) are expected to stop operating within the next 24 hours.
  9. If the current situation should persist the solid wastes generated in the Strip will accumulate in piles on the streets endangering the health of the locals.

The WaSH Monitoring Program calls on the International Community to push Israel to immediately cease all military operations, reopen the borders to allow the movement of people and goods and provide fuel supply and humanitarian aid to the residents of Gaza.

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