Palestinian Civil Society Call for BDS

Palestinian Civil Society Calls for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions against Israel Until it Complies with International Law and Universal Principles of Human Rights

9 July 2005

One year after the historic Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) which found Israel’s Wall built on occupied Palestinian territory to be illegal; Israel continues its construction of the colonial Wall with total disregard to the Court’s decision. Thirty eight years into Israel’s occupation of the Palestinian West Bank (including East Jerusalem), Gaza Strip and the Syrian Golan Heights, Israel continues to expand Jewish colonies. It has unilaterally annexed occupied East Jerusalem and the Golan Heights and is now de facto annexing large parts of the West Bank by means of the Wall. Israel is also preparing – in the shadow of its lanned redeployment from the Gaza Strip – to build and expand colonies in the West Bank. Fifty seven years after the state of Israel was built mainly on land ethnically cleansed of its Palestinian owners, a majority of Palestinians are refugees, most of whom are stateless. Moreover, Israel’s entrenched system of racial discrimination against its own Arab-Palestinian citizens remains intact.

In light of Israel’s persistent violations of international law; and

Given that, since 1948, hundreds of UN resolutions have condemned Israel’s colonial and discriminatory policies as illegal and called for immediate, adequate and effective remedies; and

Given that all forms of international intervention and peace-making have until now failed to convince or force Israel to comply with humanitarian law, to respect fundamental human rights and to end its occupation and oppression of the people of Palestine; and

In view of the fact that people of conscience in the international community have historically shouldered the moral responsibility to fight injustice, as exemplified in the struggle to abolish apartheid in South Africa through diverse forms of boycott, divestment and sanctions; and

Inspired by the struggle of South Africans against apartheid and in the spirit of international solidarity, moral consistency and resistance to injustice and oppression;

We, representatives of Palestinian civil society, call upon international civil society organizations and people of conscience all over the world to impose broad boycotts and implement divestment initiatives against Israel similar to those applied to South Africa in the apartheid era. We appeal to you to pressure your respective states to impose embargoes and sanctions against Israel. We also invite conscientious Israelis to support this Call, for the sake of justice and genuine peace.

These non-violent punitive measures should be maintained until Israel meets its obligation to recognize the Palestinian people’s inalienable right to self-determination and fully complies with the precepts of international law by:

  1. Ending its occupation and colonization of all Arab lands and dismantling the Wall
  2. Recognizing the fundamental rights of the Arab-Palestinian citizens of Israel to full equality; and
  3. Respecting, protecting and promoting the rights of Palestinian refugees to return to their homes and properties as stipulated in UN resolution 194.

Endorsed by:

The Palestinian political parties, unions, associations, coalitions and organizations below represent the three integral parts of the people of Palestine: Palestinian refugees, Palestinians under occupation and Palestinian citizens of Israel.

Unions, Associations, Campaigns

• Council of National and Islamic Forces in Palestine (Coordinating body for the major political parties in the Occupied Palestinian Territory)

• Palestinian Independent Commission for Citizen’s Rights (PICCR)

• Union of Arab Community Based Associations (ITTIJAH), Haifa

• Forum of Palestinian NGOs in Lebanon

• Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU)

• General Union of Palestinian Women (GUPW)

• General Union of Palestinian Teachers (GUPT)

• Federation of Unions of Palestinian Universities’ Professors and Employees

• Consortium of Professional Associations

• Union of Palestinian Medical Relief Committees (UPMRC)

• Health Work Committees – West Bank

• Union of Agricultural Work Committees (UAWC)

• Union of Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees (PARC)

• Union of Health Work Committees – Gaza (UHWC)

• Union of Palestinian Farmers

• Occupied Palestine and Syrian Golan Heights Advocacy Initiative (OPGAI)

• General Union of Disabled Palestinians

• Palestinian Federation of Women’s Action Committees (PFWAC)

• Palestinian Campaign for the Academic and Cultural Boycott of Israel (PACBI)

• Palestinian Grassroots Anti-Apartheid Wall Campaign

• Union of Teachers of Private Schools

• Union of Women’s Work Committees, Tulkarem (UWWC)

• Dentists’ Association – Jerusalem Center

• Palestinian Engineers Association

• Lawyers’ Association

• Network for the Eradication of Illiteracy and Adult Education, Ramallah

• Coordinating Committee of Rehabilitation Centers – West Bank

• Coalition of Lebanese Civil Society Organizations (150 organizations)

• Solidarity for Palestinian Human Rights (SPHR), Network of Student-based Canadian University Associations

Refugee Rights Associations/Organizations

  1. Al-Ard Committees for the Defense of the Right of Return, Syria

  2. Al-Awda Charitable Society, Beit Jala

  3. Al Awda – Palestine Right-to-Return Coalition, U.S.A

  4. Al-Awda Toronto
  5. Aidun Group – Lebanon
  6. Aidun Group – Syria
  7. Alrowwad Cultural and Theatre Training Center, Aida refugee camp

  8. Association for the Defense of the Rights of the Internally Displaced (ADRID), Nazareth

  9. BADIL Resource Center for Palestinian Residency and Refugee Rights, Bethlehem

  10. Committee for Definite Return, Syria
  11. Committee for the Defense of Palestinian Refugee Rights, Nablus

  12. Consortium of the Displaced Inhabitants of Destroyed Palestinian Villages and Towns

  13. Filastinuna – Commission for the Defense of the Right of Return, Syria

  14. Handala Center, ‘Azza (Beit Jibreen) refugee camp, Bethlehem

  15. High Committee for the Defense of the Right of Return, Jordan

(including personal endorsement of 71 members of parliament, political parties and unions in Jordan)

  1. High National Committee for the Defense of the Right of Return , Ramallah

  2. International Right of Return Congress (RORC)

  3. Jermana Youth Forum for the Defense of the Right of Return, Syria

  4. Laji Center, Aida camp, Bethlehem
  5. Local Committee for Rehabilitation, Qalandia refugee camp, Jerusalem

  6. Local Committee for Rehabilitation of the Disabled, Deheishe refugee camp, Bethlehem

  7. Palestinian National Committee for the Defense of the Right of Return, Syria

  8. Palestinian Return Association, Syria
  9. Palestinian Return Forum, Syria
  10. Palestine Right-of-Return Coalition (Palestine, Arab host countries, Europe, North America)

  11. Palestine Right-of-Return Confederation-Europe (Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden)

  12. Palestinian Youth Forum for the Right of Return, Syria

  13. PLO Popular Committees – West Bank refugee camps

  14. PLO Popular Committees – Gaza Strip refugee camps

  15. Popular Committee – al-‘Azza (Beit Jibreen) refugee camp, Bethlehem

  16. Popular Committee – Deheishe refugee camp, Bethlehem

  17. Shaml – Palestinian Diaspora and Refugee Center, Ramallah

  18. Union of Women’s Activity Centers – West Bank Refugee Camps

  19. Union of Youth Activity Centers – Palestine Refugee Camps, West Bank and Gaza

  20. Women’s Activity Center – Deheishe refugee camp, Bethlehem

  21. Yafa Cultural Center, Balata refugee camp, Nablus


  1. Abna’ al-Balad Society, Nablus
  2. Addameer Center for Human Rights, Gaza

  3. Addameer Prisoners’ Support and Human Rights Association, Ramallah

  4. Alanqa’ Cultural Association, Hebron
  5. Al-Awda Palestinian Folklore Society, Hebron

  6. Al-Doha Children’s Cultural Center, Bethlehem

  7. Al-Huda Islamic Center, Bethlehem
  8. Al-Jeel al-Jadid Society, Haifa

  9. Al-Karameh Cultural Society, Um al-Fahm

  10. Al-Maghazi Cultural Center, Gaza
  11. Al-Marsad Al-Arabi, occupied Syrian Golan Heights

  12. Al-Mezan Center for Human Rights, Gaza

  13. Al-Nahda Cultural Forum, Hebron
  14. Al-Taghrid Society for Culture and Arts, Gaza

  15. Alternative Tourism Group, Beit Sahour (ATG)
  16. Al-Wafa’ Charitable Society, Gaza
  17. Applied Research Institute Jerusalem (ARIJ)

  18. Arab Association for Human Rights, Nazareth (HRA)

  19. Arab Center for Agricultural Development (ACAD)

  20. Arab Center for Agricultural Development-Gaza

  21. Arab Educational Institute – Open Windows (affiliated with Pax Christie International)

  22. Arab Orthodox Charitable Society – Beit Sahour

  23. Arab Orthodox Charity – Beit Jala
  24. Arab Orthodox Club – Beit Jala
  25. Arab Orthodox Club – Beit Sahour
  26. Arab Students’ Collective, University of Toronto

  27. Arab Thought Forum, Jerusalem (AFT)

  28. Association for Cultural Exchange Hebron – France

  29. Association Najdeh, Lebanon
  30. Authority for Environmental Quality, Jenin
  31. Bader Society for Development and Reconstruction, Gaza

  32. Canadian Palestine Foundation of Quebec, Montreal

  33. Center for the Defense of Freedoms, Ramallah

  34. Center for Science and Culture, Gaza

  35. Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Ramallah- Al-Bireh District

  36. Child Development and Entertainment Center, Tulkarem

  37. Committee for Popular Participation, Tulkarem
  38. Defense for Children International-Palestine Section, Ramallah (DCI/PS)

  39. El-Funoun Palestinian Popular Dance Troupe

  40. Ensan Center for Democracy and Human Rights, Bethlehem

  41. Environmental Education Center, Bethlehem
  42. FARAH – Palestinian Center for Children, Syria

  43. Ghassan Kanafani Society for Development, Gaza

  44. Ghassan Kanafani Forum, Syria
  45. Gaza Community Mental Health Program, Gaza (GCMHP)

  46. Golan for Development, occupied Syrian Golan Heights

  47. Halhoul Cultural Forum, Hebron
  48. Himayeh Society for Human Rights, Um al-Fahm

  49. Holy Land Trust – Bethlehem
  50. Home of Saint Nicholas for Old Ages – Beit Jala

  51. Human Rights Protection Center, Lebanon
  52. In’ash al-Usrah Society, Ramallah
  53. International Center of Bethlehem (Dar An-Nadweh)
  54. Islah Charitable Society-Bethlehem
  55. Jafra Youth Center, Syria
  56. Jander Center, al-Azza (Beit Jibreen) refugee camp, Bethlehem

  57. Jerusalem Center for Women, Jerusalem (JCW)

  58. Jerusalem Legal Aid and Human Rights Center (JLAC )

  59. Khalil Al Sakakini Cultural Center, Ramallah

  60. Land Research Center, Jerusalem (LRC)

  61. Liberated Prisoners’ Society, Palestine
  62. Local Committee for Social Development, Nablus

  63. Local Committee for the Rehabilitation of the Disabled, Nablus

  64. MA’AN TV Network, Bethlehem
  65. Medical Aid for Palestine, Canada
  66. MIFTAH-Palestinian Initiative for the Promotion of Global Dialogue and Democracy, Ramallah

  67. Muwatin-The Palestinian Institute for the Study of Democracy

  68. National Forum of Martyr’s Families, Palestine

  69. Near East Council of Churches Committee for Refugee Work – Gaza Area

  70. Network of Christian Organizations – Bethlehem (NCOB)

  71. Palestinian Council for Justice and Peace, Jerusalem

  72. Palestinian Counseling Center, Jerusalem (PCC)

  73. Palestinian Democratic Youth Union, Lebanon
  74. Palestinian Farmers’ Society, Gaza
  75. Palestinian Hydrology Group for Water and Environment Resources Development-Gaza

  76. Palestinian Prisoners’ Society-West Bank
  77. Palestinian Society for Consumer Protection, Gaza

  78. Palestinian University Students’ Forum for Peace and Democracy, Hebron

  79. Palestinian Women’s Struggle Committees
  80. Palestinian Working Women Society for Development (PWWSD)

  81. Popular Art Centre, Al-Bireh
  82. Prisoner’s Friends Association – Ansar Al-Sajeen, Majd al-Krum

  83. Public Aid Association, Gaza
  84. Ramallah Center for Human Rights Studies

  85. Saint Afram Association – Bethlehem
  86. Saint Vincent De Paule – Beit Jala
  87. Senior Citizen Society – Beit Jala
  88. Social Development Center, Nablus
  89. Society for Self-Development, Hebron
  90. Society for Social Work, Tulkarem
  91. Society for Voluntary Work and Culture, Um al-Fahm

  92. Society of Friends of Prisoners and Detainees, Um al-Fahm

  93. Sumoud-Political Prisoners Solidarity Group, Toronto

  94. Tamer Institute for Community Education, Ramallah

  95. TCC – Teacher’s Creativity Center, Ramallah
  96. Wi’am Center, Bethlehem
  97. Women’s Affairs Technical Committee, Ramallah and Gaza (WATC)

  98. Women’s Studies Center, Jerusalem (WSC)

  99. Women’s Center for Legal Aid and Counseling, Jerusalem (WCLAC)

  100. Yafa for Education and Culture, Nablus

  101. Yazour Charitable Society, Nablus
  102. YMCA-East Jerusalem
  103. Youth Cooperation Forum, Hebron
  104. YWCA-Palestine
  105. Zakat Committee-al-Khader, Bethlehen
  106. Zakat Committee-Deheishe camp, Bethlehem
  107. The Palestinian Center for Rapprochement between People (PCR)
  108. Alternative Voice in the Galilee (AVIG)