‘No matter how you look at it, you’re not an Israeli’: Palestinian women, their families and friends speak out
A few years ago, a woman named Nader was working as a cook in the Palestinian city of Ramallah.
She would work until midnight and would go home with the leftover food she cooked, which she would then distribute to her family and friends.
When she arrived home at 4 a.m. to prepare breakfast, she would immediately see her husband and four children.
All four of their children were asleep, her husband told her.
The children had not yet eaten.
The next morning, they woke up to find their mother and father sleeping beside them, dead.
When Nader returned home, she found the children asleep on the floor and that the husband was still missing.
She was terrified.
She wanted to go to Ramallah to help her family, but she could not because of her job.
Nader’s husband was an American citizen and she had no idea that his passport had expired.
She knew nothing about her rights as an Israeli citizen, so she decided to take her story to the world.
In 2014, the U.S. Congress passed the Stop Arming Terrorists Act, which mandated that all countries involved in military conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) recognize and take steps to protect civilians in those conflicts.
Israel has been a major sponsor of violence in the MENA.
In the wake of Nader and her family’s plight, the Israeli government issued a statement saying it is “deeply saddened” by the loss of life in Gaza, where thousands of civilians are being killed every day.
Israel said that the country is “committed to ensuring the safety and security of its citizens.”
The statement went on to say that Israel would “work with the international community to address any shortcomings” in the implementation of the law.
In response to the Israeli statement, the international advocacy group Human Rights Watch called the law “a disgraceful response to what should have been a humanitarian crisis.”
The Human Rights Commission of the United Nations, an independent agency that monitors human rights violations, said that Israel’s response is a “shameful failure.”
Human Rights Campaign, a major Democratic party-aligned advocacy organization, said in a statement that Israel is “ignoring” international humanitarian law and “treating civilians as second-class citizens.”
In a statement released last month, Human Rights and Peace Action Coalition (HAPAC) said, “The U.N. has declared Israel as a party to the Fourth Geneva Convention and, therefore, Israel is an unlawful occupation and is in violation of international humanitarian laws.”
HAPAC added that Israel should immediately cease the destruction of Palestinian homes and other properties in Gaza.
The coalition, which is part of the Stop the War Coalition, said it would be pressing Israel to “cease and desist from any further destruction of homes, businesses, and infrastructure.”
Israel has repeatedly defended its actions in the region as necessary to defend the lives of its soldiers.
The military says its operation in Gaza was necessary to prevent rockets from reaching Israeli cities, and it says it has destroyed thousands of rockets since the conflict began.
On Friday, Israel said it has been working closely with the U,S., France, Britain and the United States to help broker a truce in Gaza and to avoid any further violence.
The U.K. said it had invited Israel to attend an official summit of its Foreign Affairs Council in London next week.
“We are determined to work with Israel and our allies to find a lasting solution to the crisis in Gaza,” the U of K said in an emailed statement.
“As the UNSC resolution makes clear, the use of force in Gaza cannot be used to achieve peace and security for Palestinians.
As such, we expect Israel to follow through on its promise to engage in a negotiated political solution to this crisis, which could include the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.”