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Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs
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International Law – Media Perspectives: Human Rights

Palestinians in the Arab World: Why the Silence?
Khaled Abu Toameh  |  Human RightsWhen was the last time the United Nations Security Council met to condemn an Arab government for its mistreatment of Palestinians? How come groups and individuals on university campuses in the US and Canada that call themselves “pro-Palestinian” remain silent when Jordan revokes the citizenship of thousands of Palestinians? The plight of Palestinians living in Arab countries in general, and Lebanon in particular, is one that is often ignored by the mainstream media in West.
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New IDF orders for expelling illegals
Dan Izenberg  |  Human RightsIn response to international criticism of two military orders that went into effect Tuesday dealing with so-called infiltrators living in the West Bank, the government launched an information campaign to convince critics that they had been introduced out of concern for Palestinian human rights.
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Targeted for death
Military and Human Rights Lawyers  |  Human RightsMilitary and human rights lawyers weigh in on the legality of the killing of Hamas’ Mahmoud Mabhouh.
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Israel-bashers hold a double standard on rights abuses
Ronald Lauder  |  Human RightsThe UN reserves most of its ire for the most liberal, free and progressive country in the Middle East. A country that guarantees and upholds religious freedom and offers all of its citizens, including its Arab minority, the same civil rights, is pilloried by those who blatantly disregard the values of the UN Charter and the Declaration of Human Rights. Yet the critics often turn a blind eye to the realities in the Middle East. They ignore that the Iranian regime, which crushed protests this summer and has not been censured for this, has for years not only ideologically opposed Israel, but supported the training of Hamas and Hizbullah fighters, supplied them with weapons and thus sponsored attacks on Israel.
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HRW report: Hamas rocket fire on Israel a war crime
Editor  |  Human RightsHuman Rights Watch publishes new report on Islamist group’s attacks on Israel since November ’08; says Hamas violated international law by targeting civilian population in south, unnecessarily risking Palestinian civilians in Strip.
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Gaza/Israel: Hamas Rocket Attacks on Civilians Unlawful
Editor  |  Human RightsHamas should repudiate unlawful rocket attacks against Israeli population centers and hold those responsible for them to account, Human Rights Watch said in a new report released today. Hamas and other Palestinian armed groups have over several years launched thousands of rockets at Israeli cities and towns, including hundreds during Israel’s three-week military offensive in Gaza in December 2008 and January 2009. A UN fact-finding investigation into serious violations of the laws of war by both sides in the Gaza conflict, led by Judge Richard Goldstone, is due to report back to the UN Human Rights Council in September.
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Rockets from Gaza: Harm to Civilians from Palestinian Armed Groups’ Rocket Attacks
Human Rights Watch  |  Human RightsUnder international humanitarian law applicable to the fighting between Palestinian armed groups and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), such weapons are inherently indiscriminate when directed towards densely populated areas. The absence of Israeli military forces in the areas struck by the rockets, as well as statements from the leaders of Hamas and other armed groups, indicate that many of these attacks are deliberately intended to strike Israeli civilians and civilian structures. Individuals who willfully authorize or carry out deliberate or indiscriminate attacks against civilians are committing war crimes.
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Targeting Human Rights Abuse in Iran: A Postelection Strategy
Emanuele Ottolenghi  |  Human RightsDespite recent events, engaging Iran may still be a worthwhile policy goal. Engagement gives the United States time to convince potential allies that all venues for compromise have been sufficiently tried. It affords the regime an opportunity to change its behavior. It communicates to Iran that the West is ready to engage the regime before it inflicts economic pain on the people, and, perhaps most important, it places the burden of failure squarely on the regime. Nevertheless, governments exercising diplomatic engagement should not be tempted to pretend that all is well in Tehran: pretense has no place in the face of repression.
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A lesson in proportionality and rights
Afua Hirsch  |  Human RightsWe can learn from Israel, Germany and South Africa on the vital importance of proportionality as a test to limits on human rights
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UN rights body praises Sri Lanka, condemns Tigers
AFP  |  Human RightsThe UN Human Rights Council praised on Wednesday Sri Lanka’s victory over the Tamil Tigers and condemned the rebels for using civilians as human shields.
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