Media release | Friday, 26 January 2024
Sixteen global human rights and humanitarian organisations have declared a joint call for all states to immediately halt the transfer of weapons, parts and ammunition to Israel and Palestinian armed groups.
The group said this halt is vital to implement while there is risk that foreign-produced arms could be used to commit or facilitate serious violations of international humanitarian or human rights law.
Signatories included Save the Children, Oxfam International and Plan International. The Australian entities of these organisations are members of the Australian Council for International Development, Australia's peak body for international development and humanitarian assistance.
ACFID strongly supports this message. Australia has a defence manufacturing industry of its own, which exports some goods to the state of Israel. ACFID calls on the government to immediately halt this trade.
Jessica Mackenzie, ACFID's Acting CEO said:
"The global weapons trade severely undermines humanitarian efforts. Furthermore, they can be used in a way that violates international humanitarian law.
"Our members and their partners working on the ground tell us that they are already significantly impeded in their efforts to reach those who are vulnerable, hungry and without shelter due to the ongoing bombardments of the civilian population of the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
"We add our voice to the international call for an immediate halt to the transfer of weaponry and related products to Israel and armed Palestinian groups.
“Furthermore, we call on Australia to take heed and immediately cease issuing export permits for hardware and software to that region and groups."
ACFID continues to advocate for an immediate ceasefire.
Read the statement from the 16 groups here: 16 leading organizations call to stop arms transfers to Israel, Palestinian armed groups (amnesty.org)
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