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ISRAEL AND THE OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES/PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY: Last call for Israel's Universal Periodic Review: the international community urges Israel to participate on 29 October 2013

3 Oct 2013
[International Secretariat]
Region: ISRAEL AND THE OCCUPIED PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES/PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY
Topic:

Amnesty International welcomes Israel's recent preparations for review by the Human Rights Committee in relation to the implementation of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. By initiating national consultations on the State report, Israel seems to signal willingness to re-engage with UN human rights processes.

Amnesty International urges Israel to extend this will to its Universal Periodic Review that is scheduled for 29 October. Israel did not appear for its initial review on 29 January 2013: the first State to avoid the review process. Preserving the universality of the UPR is crucial not only for its credibility in strengthening human rights globally, but also for the consideration of human rights in Israel.

Concerns worthy of mention since its last review in December 2008 include the following:

  • Torture and other ill-treatment continue to be carried out during arrest and interrogation and prompt, thorough and impartial investigations are extremely rare.
  • Israel has not followed through on its commitment in the UPR to granting the rights of conscientious objectors to serve in a civilian body. Individuals continue to be penalized for refusing military service on grounds of conscience.
  • The housing rights of the Bedouin minority in Israel are not respected.
  • Tens of thousands of Bedouin citizens of Israel in the Negev/Naqab region are discriminated against with respect to their right to adequate housing. They have suffered the repeated demolition of their homes as a corollary of discriminatory policies that do not recognize the legality of some 35 villages in the Negev/Naqab region.

These violations, and others, are a reminder of how important is the reinforcement of human rights frameworks in Israel.

Amnesty International appreciates the efforts of the President of this Council to bring Israel back into the UPR process. We now ask the Council to call on members of the international community to take appropriate steps to ensure the participation of all states in the UPR.

Background

Amnesty International delivered the oral statement above to the UN Human Rights Council on 23 September 2013 during its 24th session, during the General Debate on the UPR under Item 6.

Amnesty International had called on Israel to participate in the review originally scheduled for 29 January 2013:
The Universal Periodic Review, human rights, and Israel: What’s at stake:

Amnesty International submitted information for the UN Universal Periodic Review of Israel, as originally planned, on 1 July 2012:
Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories: Failing its human rights commitments (Index MDE 15/057/2012):

25 September 2013
AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL PUBLIC STATEMENT

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