In the middle of the re-emergence of Israeli military violence in Gaza, a coalition of civil society organisations for the Liberation of Palestine condemns all forms of violence and their impact on the victims. We also call for Indonesia, as a member of the United Nations Human Rights Council as of October 10, 2023, which has expressed its determination to continue advocating for Palestinian sovereignty during the UN General Assembly session on September 24, 2023, and other international actors, to intervene in brokering a ceasefire between the two parties involved.
The conflict between these two entities dates back to the Balfour Declaration of 1917, which led to the territorial division resulting in Palestine currently holding only 22% of the territory, including the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. Stemming from Israel’s occupation, the struggle for territorial control has persisted for hundreds of years, causing widespread violence and impacts on victims not involved in the war. The escalation of the conflict increased following Hamas’s attack on October 7, 2023, during an Israeli concert being held at the Gaza-Israel border. This attack resulted in the deaths of over 1,000 people and the abduction of 200 individuals. Israel responded with a declaration of war, claiming it as an act of self-defence in accordance with Article 51 of the UN Charter.
However, this attack, in reality, does not comply with the limitations of self-defence as stipulated in International Humanitarian Law. The casualty count reached 5,500 individuals in Gaza as of October 20, 2023, with approximately a third of them being children, and the remainder consisting of civilians who were not involved in the conflict. Moreover, Israel’s retaliatory attack on Palestine, using white phosphorus, during its military operations in Gaza, places civilians at risk of serious and long-term injuries. This is in direct violation of international humanitarian law, particularly considering that such weaponry is often used in residential areas.
Some of the butterfly effects of the conflict escalation are as follows:
Unfortunately, various prominent international figures have openly made statements that have the potential to further escalate the conflict in the long term. One of these is the statement made by U.S. President Joe Biden on October 10, 2023. “The people of Israel lived through one such moment this weekend. The bloody hands of the terrorist organization Hamas — a group whose stated purpose for being is to kill Jews. This was an act of sheer evil.” Other than Biden, Model European Parliament (MEP) is concerned with Israeli citizens and condemn the actions of Hamas categorised as acts of terrorism . Furthermore, MEP also sent letters to various social media platforms such as Meta, X, and Tiktok, requesting the removal of content related to the ongoing conflict. MEP considers that these contents contain elements of terrorism, violence, hate speech, and misinformation that do not comply with the Digital Services Act (DSA) of the European Union.
The absence of concrete international actions such as the implementation of the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) by superpower states towards the affected victims, binding actions and sanctions from international organisations like the United Nations (UN) and the European Union (EU) to enforce arms embargo between the conflicting parties perpetuates the ongoing violence in the conflict between Palestine and Israel.
Therefore, the Coalition of Civil Society Organizations for the Liberation of Palestine recommends:
Government of Indonesia
1) Engage in a more active role as a member of the UN Human Rights Council in consistently advocating for Palestinian sovereignty in international forums and steadfastly uphold the perspective of the victims.
2) Collaborate with other UN Human Rights Council members in intensive communication with the UN Security Council to de-escalate the conflict and achieve a ceasefire.
3) Utilize its position in the UN Human Rights Council to condemn all repressive actions, such as Israel’s invasion in the Gaza Strip, including the excessive deployment of military forces during ongoing violence.
4) Utilize its position in the UN Human Rights Council to encourage the UN Security Council to exercise its veto power against the United States, which is suspected of perpetuating the blockade of access to aid for people in the Gaza Strip.
5) Utilize its position in the UN Human Rights Council to push for the lifting of the illegal 16-year blockade in the Gaza Strip by Israel.
6) Follow up on the impacts of attacks on victims with opposing UN agencies such as WHO, UNICEF, UNWOMEN, and other international organizations in providing direct assistance.
1) Ensure that the ongoing investigation by the International Criminal Court (ICC) into the situation in Palestine receives full support and all necessary resources.
2) Stop shadow banning content related to the conflict, which is part of freedom of expression and the right to access information by relevant parties, such as Meta and others.
3) Urge powerful nations to enforce the Responsibility to Protect (R2P) for victims who are affected and potentially affected in the future.
4) Urge relevant parties in the escalation of the Israel-Palestine conflict to adhere to international humanitarian law, including the 1949 Geneva Conventions and the 1977 protocols, where civilians should not be targeted and victimized by the parties involved.
5) Call upon Hamas and other armed resistance groups to immediately cease deliberate attacks on civilians, indiscriminate rocket fire, and hostage-taking. They must unconditionally and promptly release civilian hostages.
Jakarta, October 28, 2023
Coalition of Civil Society Organizations for the Liberation of Palestine
Initiatives for International Dialogue (IID)
Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (KontraS)
Humanist Foundation Southeast Asia (affiliated with Hivos)
Center for Law and Policy Studies (PSHK)
Indonesian Legal Aid Foundation (YLBHI)
Milk Tea Alliance Indonesia
SAFEnet – Southeast Asia Freedom of Expression Network
Perkumpulan Lintas Feminis Jakarta
Amnesty International Indonesia
Pusat Kajian Perempuan Solo (PUKAPS)
Komunitas Perempuan Berkisah
Yayasan Perempuan Indonesia Tumbuh Berdaya (Pribudaya)