Joint Statement Calling on Biden Administration to Condemn Israeli government plans to Forcibly Displace Palestinians in Occupied East Jerusalem

Chicago Area Peace Action and our Palestinian Human & Civil Rights Campaign wholeheartadly endorse the below statement.

Read more about this statement and the grassroots advocacy from The Hill and Middle East Eye 

The undersigned grassroots and advocacy organizations stand in solidarity with the Palestinian residents of occupied East Jerusalem currently at risk of losing their homes and call on the Biden administration to immediately and publicly condemn the Israeli government’s plans to forcibly displace 1,550 Palestinians from their homes in the Sheikh Jarrah and Al-Bustan neighborhoods of occupied East Jerusalem and to exert the utmost diplomatic pressure to prevent these potential war crimes from taking place. 

The situation is particularly urgent in Sheikh Jarrah, where the Israeli government plans to forcibly displace hundreds of Palestinians from homes they have lived in for generations, in order to allow Israeli settlers to move in, an act which is illegal under international humanitarian law. On May 7, the United Nations urged the Israeli government to halt these plans, stating that the forced displacement could amount to war crimes. This takes place in the broader context of Israel’s ongoing policy to forcibly remove Palestinians from their homes through eviction, home demolition, and displacement, with the express intent of pushing Palestinians out of Jerusalem in order to create and maintain a Jewish majority and supremacy in the city. 

Furthermore, we are deeply disturbed by the violence and use of force that Israeli police in East Jerusalem are employing against Palestinian residents, protestors, and worshippers during the last ten days of Ramadan. Over the past week, residents and activists leading sit-ins, vigils, and protests against the forced displacement in Sheikh Jarrah have been met with overwhelming violence and force from Israeli police and settlers, including a police officer kneeling on a protestor’s neck while he shouts that he is being suffocated, and attacking worshippers at Al Aqsa Mosque , Islam’s third holiest site. Protestors have also faced harassment from Israeli officials, including an incident in which the Deputy Mayor of Jerusalem told a Palestinian activist it was “a pity” that he wasn’t shot in the head. 

Israeli state violence is, of course, not limited to Jerusalem. We are horrified by Israel’s use of disproportionate and deadly force against Palestinians in Gaza which have already resulted in the killings of dozens of Palestinians, including children. This comes within the context of Israel’s 14 year illegal blockade on Gaza which has created an open air prison with severe shortages of life-saving medicines, food, electricity, and clean water, making life unsafe and unbearable. We call on the Biden administration to condemn this violence and address its root causes: Israeli blockade and occupation. 

The Biden administration has repeatedly stated that it intends to center its foreign policy around respect for human rights and international law. We therefore call on the administration to uphold international law and act in accordance with the urgency of the moment to prevent the Israeli government’s forced displacement of thousands of Palestinians. 

We support the asks articulated in a letter led by Congresswoman Marie Newman (IL-03) and signed by 24 members of Congress calling on the Biden administration to:

1. Immediately send the strongest possible diplomatic message to Israel to desist from its plans to demolish Palestinian homes in Al-Bustan and evict Palestinians from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah; 

2. Publicly reiterate that U.S. policy opposes Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem and that East Jerusalem is Occupied Territory under international law; 3. Undertake an expeditious review of previous Congressional requests that the State Department investigate whether Israel’s demolition of Palestinian homes with U.S. weapons violates the Arms Export Control Act (AECA); 

4. If Israel proceeds with its plans to demolish Palestinian homes in Al-Bustan and evict Palestinian residents from their homes in Sheikh Jarrah, then the U.S. Embassy to Israel should send observers to document Israel’s forced displacement of Palestinians, including details on the military units involved in these operations and the usage of any U.S. weapons for purposes of oversight and accountability regarding Leahy Law and AECA violations. 

Sincerely, 

350.org 

About Face: Veterans Against the War 

Action Center on Race & the Economy (ACRE) 

Adalah Justice Project 

African Public Affairs Committee 

Alianza Americas 

Alliance for Water Justice in Palestine 

American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) 

American Friends Service Committee 

Americans for Democracy & Human Rights in Bahrain (ADHRB) 

American Muslims for Palestine 

Arab American Association of NY 

Arab American Caucus 

Arab American Civic Council 

Arab American Institute 

Arab Resource & Organizing Center (AROC) 

Armenian-American Action Network 

As the Spirit Moves Us 

Ayada Leads 

Borderlands for Equity 

Center for International Policy 

CHANGE (Center for Health and Gender Equity) 

Chicago Faith Coalition on Middle East Policy 

Christian Peacemaker Teams 

Churches for Middle East Peace 

CODEPINK 

Common Defense

Community Renewal Society 

Congregation of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd, US Provinces Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) 

Council on American-Islamic Relations, Washington Chapter Cross Border Network for Justice & Solidarity 

Demand Progress 

Democracy for America 

Democratic Socialists of America 

Detention Watch Network 

Disciples Palestine Israel Network (DPIN) 

Dissenters 

Dream Defenders 

Emgage Action 

Empowering Pacific Islander Communities (EPIC) 

Episcopal Peace Fellowship-Palestine Israel Network 

Eyewitness Palestine 

Fellowship of Reconciliation 

The Feminist Front 

For All 

Freedom Forward 

Friends Committee on National Legislation (FCNL) 

Friends of Sabeel North America 

Grassroots Global Justice Alliance 

Grassroots International 

Historians for Peace and Democracy 

Hometown Action 

ICNA Council for Social Justice 

IfNotNow 

Indiana Center for Middle East Peace 

Indivisible 

Indivisible Illinois 

International Civil Society Action Network (ICAN) 

Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno 

Islamophobia Studies Center 

Israel Palestine Mission Network of the Presbyterian Church Jetpac Resource Center 

Jewish Voice for Peace Action 

Jews for Racial And Economic Justice (JFREJ) 

Just Foreign Policy 

Justice Democrats 

Justice for Muslims Collective 

Kehilla Community Synagogue 

MADRE 

Mainers for Accountable Leadership

March For Science 

Massachusetts Peace Action 

MediaJustice 

Middle East Children’s Alliance (MECA) 

Migrant Roots Media 

Monthly Review Foundation 

MoveOn 

MPower Change 

Muslim Peace Fellowship 

National Advocacy Center of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd National Arab American Women’s Association (NAAWA) National Council of Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC) National Iranian American Council 

National Network for Immigrant & Refugee Rights National Writers Union 

New Hampshire Youth Movement 

New Internationalism Project at Institute for Policy Studies Nonviolence International 

Northeast Political Prisoner Coalition 

OD Action 

On Earth Peace 

Our Revolution 

Palestine Advocacy Project 

Palestine Legal 

Palestinian Christian Alliance for Peace 

Pax Christi USA 

Peace Action 

People’s Action Institute 

Presente.org 

Progressive Democrats of America 

Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada 

Project Blueprint 

Project South 

Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice RAICES 

ReThinking Foreign Policy 

Revolutionary Love Project 

Revolving Door Project 

Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights 

RootsAction.org 

School of the Americas Watch (SOA Watch) 

Security Policy Reform Institute (SPRI) 

Showing Up for Racial Justice (SURJ) 

Solidaire Action Fund

South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT) 

Southern Anti-Racism Network 

Sunrise Movement 

TakeAction Minnesota 

Tree of Life Educational Fund 

Tunisian United Network 

UltraViolet Action 

Unitarian Universalists for Justice in the Middle East United Church of Christ Palestine-Israel Network 

United for Peace and Justice 

The United Methodist Church – General Board of Church and Society United Vision for Idaho 

United We Dream 

US Campaign for Palestinian Rights 

U.S. Labor Against Racism and War 

Veterans For Peace 

Virginia Coalition on Human Rights 

Voice for Refuge Action Fund 

Voices for Justice in Palestine 

WESPAC Foundation, Inc. 

Whatcom Peace & Justice Center 

Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom Win Without War 

Working Families Party 

World BEYOND War

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09.22.19

40th ANNUAL