The Palestinian Non-Governmental Organizations Network (PNGO) and the Palestinian Human Rights Organizations Council (PHROC) call for Constructive Dialogue instead of Accusations of Treason and Exclusion
In light of the grave conditions in the occupied Palestinian territory, we need dialogue and unity, instead of actions that might facilitate distractions and accusations, and instead of intimidation and defamation tactics against organizations and persons that risk the destruction and loss of social and national work.
Only a few days ago, a statement from an anonymous source was circulated filled with incitement, defamation and intimidation, which cannot be accepted nor tolerated. This statement must be addressed & condemned, and its source must be revealed.
The undersigned PNGO and PHROC believe that the demeanor and language used in that statement raise questions regarding the agenda of the actors behind it. Any person who has a particular point of view may discuss it and seek to convince others. But no one must hide behind anonymity and vagueness, particularly during an unprecedented vicious attack by the Occupation against Palestinian NGOs.
The ongoing discussion within Palestinian society about European funding conditions reflects the vitality and diversity of Palestinian civil society, its commitment to defend the rule of law and the rights and aspirations of our people, as well as its rejection to brand the struggles of our people for independence, freedom and ending the occupation as terrorism.
PNGO & PHROC stress that differences in the methods and means used to challenge the funding conditions cannot be addressed by defamation and accusations of treason, and that Palestinian civil society has a unique experience in joint work and agreement on principles, which is something to be proud of and to be preserved, strengthened, developed and built upon.
Accordingly, PNGO & PHROC stress the following:
- A unified position by Palestinian civil society organizations on funding issues and conditions and any other important issue is essential for success and realizing our goals.
- Different approaches and points of view are a source of strength and are complementary when differences are managed through democratic and civilized ways and dialogue.
- Respecting the Palestinian Charitable Associations Law and NGO’s work parameters is an established rule that applies to all. Different views are accepted and can only be solved through constructive dialogue based on partnership and by rejecting exclusion.
- The European Union has many executives, officials and members of parliament who are friends. However, there are also those biased towards the occupation, who support it and who attempt to restrict the work of active Palestinian organizations by any means. It is our interest to maintain relations with our friends and to further democratic approaches based on the rule of law, international law principles, justice and human rights.
- Our dialogue with the European Union must continue to take the special reality of the Palestinian people under Israeli occupation into account; ensuring that contracts are based on international law, principles of justice; rejecting discrimination among Palestinian victims in the provision of services or in communications; and preventing that contracts are driven by political agendas.
- The struggle of our people to end the occupation and to enjoy rights based on international law and human rights principles, and the enforcement of relevant UN resolutions, including the right to self-determination and sovereignty over land, resources and borders, are non-negotiable.
- The internal dialogue within Palestinian civil society is needed more than ever at this time, in order to secure a unified position on the issues raised, prioritize collective interests and to preserve internal civil peace.
- We urge media outlets and social media to provide accurate information when addressing this matter.