News from DCI-Palestine and Gaza
Psychological support and emergency response
The Israeli military attacks against Gaza, violations of human rights and settlers’ violent incursions into cities and villages in the West Bank are going on. The DCI Socio-Legal Defence Centres Unit (SLDCs) decided to react and implemented an emergency plan to address the needs of children and targeted groups:
- Emergency contact numbers have been disseminated through the DCI-Palestine’s Arabic-language page to assist parents and children. They can now obtain consultations on how to deal with children’s distress during this war.
- Posters and guidelines to help coping with fears during wartime are designed for parents and children. They are published daily on the organisation’s Arabic-language page.
- Specialists have been trained for remote intervention and guidance for specific situations in closed areas in the West Bank.
- Emergency interventions have been provided for seriously ill children from Gaza stranded in the West Bank with their families.
- Initial psychological first aid has been provided to 15 children and their families from Gaza who are stranded in the West Bank. The same for 12 children in Hebron in fully restricted areas due to occupation measures.
- Palestinian cities’ closures deeply affect all legal processes. Therefore, emergency procedures have been put in place to follow up on cases of children in conflict with the law. Lawyers are presently handling the cases of 16 children.
Child protection and participation
In response to the Israeli military attack against Gaza, since October 7th, the children of the provincial councils- (north and south) redirected the focus of their child-led initiatives towards addressing the situation in Gaza.
The Middle West Bank Council and protection teams initiated a project called “Support the Children in Gaza” to address Human Rights violations against children. A video shared by DCI-P documents these violations. Simultaneously, the Northern Council released a video, “Voices from Gaza”. Interviews with Gaza workers stranded in Nablus depict the challenges faced by those living away from their families and children.
Following the participation of the Palestinian Child Council, DCI-P General Director Khaled Quzmar and the Community Mobilization Unit Coordinator attended an online open conference to reflect on the children’s stories and recommendations. It was led by the Child Research Centre at Maastricht University.
During the Conference, DCI-P’s Director spoke about the situation of children’s rights in the oPt and DCI’s efforts to amplify their voices and empower children as human rights defenders. DCI-P also joined the panel on children’s legal right to protection. Quzmar shed light on the situation of children imprisoned in Israeli military detention centres and underlined the achievements of DCI-P in the field of child justice including the support of other children in conflict with the Palestinian Law.
The President of the DCI Movement briefs the EU Parliament
Brussels, 31 January 2024. Palestine: the right to exist, solidarity and struggle against Israel’s impunity. This event brought together voices from the ground, from Israel and Palestine, advocating for peace based on a two-state solution.
Khaled Quzmar, president of the DCI Movement, with other Palestinian NGOs and the UN Special Rapporteur, Francesca Albanese, participated in this event in Brussels. Watch the event here in case you missed it.