In an open letter, one of Israel's foremost refugee rights lawyers calls on the deputy attorney general to follow her conscience. By Asaf Weitzen Dear Deputy Attorney General Dina Silber: I am familiar with a bit of your academic work, including two books you authored and speeches that you give from time to time. You have demonstrated a deep commitment to basic rights and an understanding that the any government must be checked if and when it seeks to infringe upon basic rights. What I find incomprehensible is the disparity between those views and your intensive involvement in legislating the amendment…Read More... | 10 Comments
African asylum seekers
As part of a new online campaign Israelis are giving voice to African asylum seekers who have been silenced, locked up and forgotten. By Avi Blecherman If you’re a Hebrew speaker you’re probably asking yourself how your Facebook feed suddenly filled up with quotes from asylum seekers in the “Holot” detention facility. Well, it’s because a new online campaign called "Voices from Holot" launched Sunday, allowing you to to share any number of quotes collected from interviews with asylum seekers from Eritrea and Sudan, all of whom are imprisoned in the “Holot" and “Saharonim” prisons. A number of human rights…Read More... | 4 Comments
Yair Lapid and Tzipi Livni have one last chance to leave a positive legacy: make sure Israel doesn't continue the administrative detention of African asylum seekers who have committed no crime. There is little doubt that Yair Lapid and Tzipi Livni will be the biggest losers of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s decision to fire them from their senior government posts. After the coming elections Lapid will almost certainly find himself in the opposition heading a smaller party, while Livni will most likely find herself in political exile once again. But despite being kicked out the government, Livni and Lapid still…Read More... | 2 Comments
Far-right protest against High Court decision to close Holot detention center greeted by flower-bearing asylum seekers. Around 100 people, including far-right activists and residents of south Tel Aviv, protested Sunday night against asylum seekers and against the High Court decision to close the Holot detention center within 90 days. Some protesters, among them former extremist Knesset member Michael Ben-Ari and radical anti-miscegenation group Lehava's chairman Benzi Gupstein, waved black flags that said "High Court" on them, drawing the comparison between Israel's highest legal body and the Islamic State, or ISIS. Protestors marched to Levinsky Park, where several refugees awaited them with flowers in hand.…Read More... | 26 Comments
Around 1,000 asylum seekers walk out of the Holot open detention facility but are stopped short of the Egyptian border, announce they will no longer seek acceptance by the Israeli government and demand that the United Nations take responsibility for them and resettle them in third countries. Text by Michael Omer-Man Photos by Oren Ziv, Yotam Ronen / Activestills.org Update (Sunday 8:30 p.m.): Police arrested the asylum seekers and loaded them onto buses. For more information and photos, click here. Update (Sunday 7 p.m.): Police told asylum seekers that they have 15 minutes to get onto buses back to…Read More... | 6 Comments
This week: activists in Europe and in Israel's Holot detention center mark International Refugee Day with marches for asylum seekers' rights. Click for +972's full coverage of the asylum seeker struggle in Israel Photo diary: Inside 'Holot' detention center for asylum seekersRead More... | 5 Comments
Mutasim Ali, a Sudanese asylum seeker and one of the leaders of the African refugee protest movement in Israel, was sent to the Holot open detention center in Israel's south around noon on Monday. Like other asylum seekers, Ali receive a summons to Holot during a visit to renew his visa at the Interior Ministry in Tel Aviv several months ago. Ali appealed the decision, under the claim that the imprisonment of all asylum seekers is illegal. After the court rejected his appeal, Ali announced that he will go to Holot and continue his struggle against the Israeli government's policies…Read More...
Three African asylum seekers were hired by a family in the Israeli city of Bat Yam; the municipality demanded that they stop working. When the asylum seekers demanded payment from the family for time worked, they were refused. Israel Social TV joined them with a camera when they demanded their pay.Read More...
This week, Land Day commemorations, rape culture protests, asylum seeker rallies, anti-wall demonstrations, and refugee camp life.Read More... | 1 Comment
Israeli journalists are only inflaming tensions by blaming longtime Oriental Jews residents of south Tel Aviv for the plight of African asylum seekers. So one must ask: why aren't journalists actually holding the government accountable? Shoshana Gabay (Translated from Hebrew by Benno Karkabe, Shoshana Gabay and Dana Hadadi) May Golan is a young resident of an impoverished south Tel Aviv neighborhood, and an active member of Michael Ben-Ari's fascist movement "Otzma Le'Israel" (Power to Israel). In an interview she gave to Haaretz, Golan succeeded in infuriating its readers with her personality and her slandering of African refugees.Golan's written profile is…Read More... | 6 Comments
In honor of International Women’s Day, Activestills brings you the best photos of the activist women who push for justice and a better life for all those between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea. Photo by: Ahmad al-Bazz, Shiraz Grinbaum, Keren Manor, Tali Mayer, Anne Paq, Ryan Rodrick Beiler, Yotam Ronen, Oren Ziv/Activestills.org Read more: Meet the Israeli women who have stood up to the occupation for 26 years Women behind the lens: Palestinians filming the occupationRead More... | 8 Comments
Day 42 - (March 16, 2014) Yesterday evening one guy in our room wasn't feeling well. I went to talk with gate prison and told him about it. He answered that it is not his responsibility. After I showed him to the room I asked to call the doctor. He allowed us to go to the doctor but when we got to the clinic we understood he wasn't really a doctor but a male nurse. He tried to check him and gave him only four capsules. He was very sick and couldn’t sleep all night. Nobody takes care of us here.…Read More... | 2 Comments
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