October-December 2013


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Local Youth Refugee Network (LYRN) and Civil Society Activists Forum (CSAF)

BADIL’s two youth groups, the LYRN and CSAF, conducted a joint initiative on forced population transfer on 5 October 2013. 35 youth from both bodies participated in an educational tour to Hebron District (Susya and Twany) and Area C villages in Bethlehem District (Wadi Fukin and Battir). The tour focused on raising awareness among the participants of the Israeli policies and practices designed to forcibly transfer Palestinian residents from those areas, particularly land confiscation and the presence of illegal settlements.
BADIL and Yatta’s Popular Committee against the Wall and Settlements coordinated a presentation regarding the mechanisms of forced population transfer. Residents of those communities, exposed to human rights violations from Israel and the settlers, shared their methods of resistance and “sumod” (steadfastness) to forced population transfer. Subsequently, the participants discussed these violations and the resulting difficulties faced by the residents: lack of services and basic infrastructure, land confiscation, recurring settler violence, and restrictions on movement and access to natural resources. The youth group also met with Operation Dove, an organization that provides international presence and documents human rights violations active in Massafer Yatta since 2004. The organization provided an overview to the types and frequency of violations they have observed and documented in that area perpetrated by the Israeli government and military and settlers.
The participants continued to the Area C villages of Bethlehem, Wadi Fukin and Battir, meeting with various local organizations and residents, discussing the geopolitical history of these villages and the initiatives to retain and utilize occupied, confiscated and inaccessible Palestinian land.
The tour concluded at Phoenix Charitable Society in Dheisheh Refugee Camp, with a screening of the documentary film “Roadmap to Apartheid” and a presentation from the Lebanon Youth Camp participants. See, in Arabic,

Reunion: Palestinian Youth inside and outside the Green Line

A first time cooperation between BADIL and Baladna Cultural Forum (Haifa) brought together Palestinian youth from within the Green Line (Israel) to meet with Palestinian youth members of BADIL’s LYRN and CSAF (mainly refugee youth from Dheisheh Refugee Camp). The 100-member group was hosted at the Phoenix Charitable Society for a day-long program that included presentations, film screenings and discussions. The discussions touched upon a wide variety of topics of concern to both groups: starting from refugee return to the difficulties faced by both groups, to the roles and responsibilities each have together and separately. Misconceptions were clarified and myths were dispelled. Considering the resounding success of this pilot initiative, BADIL, Baladna and other organizations will aim to cooperate in additional initiatives, providing opportunities for interaction among Palestinian youth from different geopolitical backgrounds

Training of Academic Activists

The fall semester of BADIL’s course “Palestinian Refugees under International Law”, delivered at Al-Quds University, commenced in September with 53 law students (23 women and 30 men). All students passed the course and the class grade average was B. Also, BADIL supervised preparation and submission of two research papers, which were conducted by two students: one from Al-Quds University and the other from Al-Estiqlal (Independence College). Both papers received B+.

Mobilization, Outreach and Networking

Campaigning in Europe: Advocacy, Awareness Raising and Engagement

Between 28 October and 12 November, BADIL went on a tour in five European states. The tour included meetings with international organizations and networks, as well as with Palestinian communities in Europe. The tour was an opportunity for BADIL to engage with its partners in advocacy events, promote a human rights based approach to the Palestinian refugee problem, and network with Palestinian communities and organizations for the establishment of a Global Palestinian Refugee Network (GPRN). BADIL connected with members of the Legal Support Network to further enhance its capacities and activities abroad and to develop the network to its fullest potential.
The tour was a huge success, allowing it to build a consensus about the root causes of ongoing Palestinian forcible displacement and dispossession, the historically unprecedented and current situation of Palestinian refugees and to highlight that only a rights-based approach will guarantee a just and long-lasting solution. Additionally, BADIL was able to distribute its publications within dozens of institutions and civil society organizations.

The BADIL team began the journey in Geneva and participated in the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) of Israel. An updated UPR report was submitted to the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) for this occasion. In addition to that, BADIL organized a side event involving the Defense for Children International-Palestine (DCI-P) and Professor Joseph Schechla (American University of Cairo and the Habitat International Coalition) in the Palais de Nations on the day of the UPR, in order to review its process and to highlight specific areas of concern (such as gaps in the UPR report, child prisoners, denial of the right of return as well as the ongoing forcible displacement of the Palestinian people). With more than 50 attendees, the event was successful, and it provided an opportunity to engage with various stakeholders and members of official delegations and international civil society.

BADIL also met with International Council of Voluntary Agencies (ICVA), the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and Collectif Urgence Palestine. In addition, a meeting was held with 35 Palestinian representatives of various communities, organizations and networks to coordinate the establishment of the Global Palestinian Refugee Network. On that occasion, BADIL presented its new Handbook which outlines Israeli state practices used to implement displacement by drawing on court decisions, legislation, military orders, and original interviews with affected individuals.

After Geneva, BADIL staff traveled to Brussels, where they held meetings with representatives of the Palestinian communities of Belgium and Luxemburg focusing on the Global Palestine Refugee Network (GPRN). BADIL participated in the EU lobbying days through its membership in the European Coordination Committee for Palestine (ECCP), and had the opportunity to directly advocate with 23 parliamentarians at the EU. BADIL’s focus was Israel’s lack of adherence to the EU Guidelines, and the ongoing impunity Israel enjoys due to lack of enforcement of these guidelines. BADIL was the only Palestinian organization present at the lobbying days. A meeting with APRODEV (an association of 17 major humanitarian and development organizations in Europe) and CIDSE (an international alliance of 16 Catholic development agencies from Europe and North America) was an opportunity to discuss their support of the Palestinian cause and the role BADIL could take in that.

In Amsterdam, BADIL met with Palestinians from Holland and held a lecture at the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), Erasmus University. The lecture was arranged by Dr. Jeff Handmaker, a senior lecturer in law, human rights and development. The lecture was attended by students, organizations and networks. The final two stops of the mission were Germany and France, where BADIL met with more Palestinian communities and representatives, as well as Generation Palestine and BDS-France.

See press release in Arabic: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 7.

BADIL hosted 20 international delegations totaling 379 persons who visited the ONEC physical space in the third quarter of 2013.The topics of the interactive lectures included international law, human rights, the rights of return and self-determination, the practicalities of return and the ONEC website as an advocacy tool.

Hosting International Delegations

BADIL hosted 20 international delegations totaling 379 persons who visited the ONEC physical space in the third quarter of 2013.The topics of the interactive lectures included international law, human rights, the rights of return and self-determination, the practicalities of return and the ONEC website as an advocacy tool

BADIL-Zochrot Joint Action

BADIL launched its short documentary film, “An Introduction to the Practicalities of Return” on 19 November 2013 at Bethlehem University, in coordination with the Department of Human Sciences. The twenty-minute film, produced by BADIL and available on BADIL’s new Vimeo account (http://vimeo.com/badilresourcecenter). The screening was preceded by an overview of BADIL as a human rights organization, then followed by an open discussion with the university students and faculty present in the event (approximately 120). The discussion revolved around the usefulness of international law, mechanisms to realize rights for Palestinian refugees, and the intrinsic difficulties associated with the geographical and political fragmentation of Palestinian society.

Related to this, the film was also presented to 10 international groups at BADIL’s Ongoing Nakba Education Center. It was also screened in Thailand, at the UN headquarters in Bangkok complemented by a photographic exhibition entitled “Palestine’s Ongoing Nakba” which is available on www.ongoingnakba.org.

Awareness and Advocacy Tools

November 2013 – “An Introduction to the Practicalities of Return” short documentary and brochure.See: vimeo link and Brochure: Putting the right of return into Practice link for brochure

November 2013 – Al-Majdal Issue #54 – “8 Years of the BDS Movement: Where have we come since 2005?” See al-Majdal

October 2013 – Haq Al-Awda Issue #55 – “Palestinian Refugees of Syria in the Absence of National and International Protection” (Title translated from Arabic). See haq Al-Awda, in Arabic: 

December 2013 – Haq Al-Awda Issue # 56 – “Palestinian Refugees: Responsible National Agencies and Organizations” (Title translated from Arabic).See haq Al-Awda, in Arabic

December 2013 – Al-Majdal Issue #55 – “The Paradox of using the law of the Oppressor”  See al-Majdal

BADIL Resource Library:

Due to the generosity of BADIL’s international partners and friends, BADIL is able to expand its Resource Library with over 20 new titles on international law, human rights, the Palestinian refugees and many other related topics. We would like to express our sincere thanks to all of you who purchased books and other resources from BADIL’s Wish List for our library. This is a vital resource for our researchers as well as Palestinian and international visitors of our library.

If you wish to support BADIL’s Resource Library please visit this link >>

Mobilization and Intervention with Duty Bearers:

BADIL believes the path to justice and durable peace is directly linked to legal advocacy interventions with decision makers and duty bearers, may they be individuals, organizations or governments. Thus, BADIL consistently participates in, and contributes to, decision-making bodies in order to shift the political will towards a solution founded in international law.

The recent UN Human Rights Council session was an important opportunity for BADIL to advocate for the inalienable rights of the Palestinian people and to promote its 2013 advocacy strategy. BADIL focused on illustrating Israel’s ongoing non-compliance with UN mechanisms, particularly the UN Human Rights Council.

On 30 September, BADIL submitted an updated report to the UN Human Rights Council for the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) session process. For the report, see link>>

BADIL also participated in the UPR of Israel in Geneva on 29 October 2013.


BADIL participated in two radio interviews and published 19 in-house press releases (17 Arabic and 2 English). BADIL’s activities and articles also made headlines on alternative media channels.

Summary of Alternative Media Coverage



“Resisting Ethnic Cleansing” translated from Arabic

In Arabic: Momken

BADIL and Baladna Youth Initiative

In Arabic: Momken

Republication“6.8 million Palestinian refugees and counting… Towards a popular strategy for resisting forcible displacement”

Electronic Intifada

“Palestinians debate Jerusalem ballot boycott”

Al Jazeera English

“An Ongoing Displacement: the Forced Exile of the Palestinians”

Visualizing Palestine

“Projects We Love: the Ongoing Nakba Education Center”


“Palestine’s Ongoing Nakba in Film”


Karama International Film Festival


“Lifta and Battir: Parallel cases of Ongoing Nakba”


“Does the passing of time affect the rights of the displaced to return?: Palestinian claims for reparation in international context”


“PLO Crisis of Representation”

Alternative News

“The Hebrew University and ‘Hasbara’”


“Lessons from the Campaign for Sanctions on Apartheid South Africa”


“Eight Years of the BDS Movement: Where have we come since 2005?”

BDS Movement

Ongoing Nakba Education Center (ONEC)

By the end of 2013, the ONEC boasted 19 new multimedia productions. In October, ONEC was selected by Muftah, an online alternative media site covering the Middle East and North Africa, as one of the “Projects We Love”. Hailed for its innovative design and inclusive approach, the ONEC is featured on Muftah’s new Innovation + Entrepreneurship page. See link >>

To promote ONEC productions, BADIL participated in the Karama Human Rights Film Festival in Ramallah in December, featuring a short documentary titled “Villagers on the Line”. Also in December, BADIL participated in Cinema Palestino’s International Film Festival in Sheffield, England which featuring the screening of three ONEC productions, and followed by a live stream Q&A session.

Institutional Development:

BADIL has completed an advanced version of its new strategic plan for 2014-2018, Empowering Rights Holders and Influencing Duty Bearers). 17 November 2013 witnessed the election of the new Board of Directors which will administer BADIL for the next two years.

Three members of BADIL staff also participated in a Monitoring and Evaluation Training implemented by InProgress and facilitated by Christian Aid.