On the 23rd of February, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague will open the hearings on the Wall that Israel is constructing in the Occupied Palestinian Territories. The hearings will take place following a request by the United Nations General Assembly to the ICJ to urgently render an advisory opinion on the legal consequences of the Wall.
Internationally, the construction of the Wall has triggered a great deal of indignation due to its grave violations of the human rights of the Palestinian people. In addition, the political consequences are unequivocal: the large-scale annexation of Palestinian land clearly undermines the prospect of a viable Palestinian state.
In the context of the hearings by the ICJ, PENGON/Anti Apartheid Wall Campaign, the Netherlands Stop the Wall Coalition and United Civilians for Peace have organized a symposium on the legal aspects and humanitarian consequences of the Wall. The programme of the day is as follows: the route of the Wall will be illustrated; legal experts will discuss the Wall in terms of international law; harmed Palestinian civilians will describe the impact of the Wall on their daily lives; politicians will be invited to present their views and there will be opportunity for debate with the public. In an audio- visual side programme, a photo exhibition and documentary material pertaining to the Wall will be shown.
21 February 2004 | 11.00-19.00 | Vrije Acedemie, The Hague
Place: Paviljoensgracht 20, The Hague (NL) | Language: English
Further information and registration via United Civilians for Peace:
Tel: +31-30- 880 1539/34 & E-mail: email@example.com.
For interviews: call Denise Lubbers on +31-6-51999711 or Henri van de Vall on +31-6-21887402.
11.00 Opening, by chairperson Sylvia Borren (UCP)
11.05 The Wall ï¿½ route and construction, by Jamal Juma’ (PENGON/Anti Apartheid Wall Campaign)
11.40 Involvement of the International Court of Justice: moment of truth? by Paul de Waart
12.05 The Wall and international humanitarian law, by Victor de Currea-Lugo (PENGON/Anti Apartheid Wall Campaign)
12.45 Lunch. Documentary ï¿½The Wallï¿½, by Benny Brunner
14.00 The Separation Barrier: Between Legitimate Security Considerations and Land Grab, by Yehezkel Lein (Bï¿½Tselem)
14.30 Testimonies by Palestinian civilians harmed by the Wall: Sharif Omar; Fayez Odah; Terry Boullata
15.30 Coffee break
16.00 A political perspective on the Wall, by Azmi Bishara (member of the Israeli parliament)
16.30 Q&A and public debate, with experts and politicians
17.30 Summary and closing remarks
Sharif Omar, or Abu Azzam, is a farmer from the village of Jayous, located in the Qalqiliya district. Abu Azzam has lost all of his lands (177 dunums), because of the construction of the Wall. The community of Jayous has lost 72% of its lands. Abu Azzam is currently head of the Land Defence Committees in the Qalqiliya District. He has spoken to countless audiences in various countries on the effects of the Wall and has participated in a number of documentary films. Abu Azzam will testify on the effects of the Wall on livelihood, agriculture and freedom of movement.