FUNDS NEEDED URGENTLY: Film about the Russell Tribunal on Palestine 16Sep10 September 17, 2010

The Film  -  ulule -  16 September 2010


ABOUT THIS PROJECT

The Russell Tribunal on Palestine (RToP) is an International People’s Tribunal created by a large group of citizens involved in the promotion of peace and justice in the Middle East. The Russell Tribunal intends to expose the complicity of third parties such as countries, international bodies or corporations in the violations of International Law by Israel. The RToP intends to educate the public and to reinforce already existing campains in their struggle for justice in the Middle East. The Second session of the RToP is taking place in November in London and we intend to make a film about it.

Panel at Press conference

We are asking you for your support towards putting together a sufficient amount of money to enable us to have a great 30 mins film to show around.

For more information about our initiative, please check our website, facebook and twitter page.

A brief introduction to the initiative:

The Russell Tribunal on Palestine is an International People’s Tribunal created by a large group of citizens involved in the promotion of peace and justice in the Middle East.

These past years, following, inter alia:

  • The international community’s failure to implement the International Court of Justice’s 2004 Advisory Opinion on the construction of a wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory.
  • The lack of implementation of the resolution ES-10/15 confirming the ICJ Opinion, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 20 July 2004.
  • And the Israeli offensive on Gaza in December 2008 – January 2009, committees have been created in different countries to promote and sustain a citizen’s initiative in support of the rights of the Palestinian people, with public international law as a legal frame of reference.

The RToP is imbued with the same spirit and espouses the same rigorous rules as those inherited from the Tribunal on Vietnam created by the eminent scholars and philosophers Bertrand Russell (1966-1967) and Jean Paul Sartre, and the Russell Tribunal II on Latin America (1974-1976) organized by the Lelio Basso International Foundation for the Rights and Liberation of Peoples.

Jury Panel in Barcelona

Members of the International Support Committee of the RToP include Nobel Prize laureates, a former United Nations Secretary-General, two former heads of state, other persons who held high political office and many representatives of civil society, writers, journalists, poets, actors, film directors, scientists, professors,
lawyers and judges (see complete list).

The First International Session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine

On the 1st, 2nd and 3rd March 2010, the first international session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine (RToP) was hosted and supported by the Barcelona National Support Committee and the Office of the Mayor of Barcelona, under the honorary presidency of Stéphane Hessel, Ambassador of France.

This session’s objective was to consider the complicities and omissions of the European Union and its member states in the ongoing occupation of Palestinian territories by Israel and the perpetuation of the violations of international law committed by Israel, in total impunity. During two days, twenty
one experts and witnesses were auditioned by a jury composed of international personalities known for their actions and moral integrity.

Testimony heard by the jury related to the right to self-determination of the Palestinian people, the closure of the Gaza Strip and operation “Cast Lead”, the illegal settlements and the plundering of natural resources, the annexation of East-Jerusalem, the Wall built in occupied Palestinian territory and the EU-Israel Association Agreement and military cooperation. After its deliberation, the jury issued its conclusions in an international press conference.

Thanks to a network of National Support Committees, the first session of this International People’s Tribunal was a resounding success both for the impact it had on the audience and the media attention it received (see here for media overage and here for pictures). The Tribunal’s conclusions were a significant aspect of its success. These conclusions provide a legally grounded body of arguments, constituting a major tool to be used by those who seek to ensure respect for the rule of international law, and the rights of the Palestinian people.

Ken Loach at press conference

Future International Session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine

The second international session of the RToP is due to take place in London, towards the end of 2010. It will examine International corporate complicity in violations of international law arising from Israel’s ongoing occupation of Palestinian land, control of and exploitation of natural resources and crops, domination of trade and infrastructure.

After establishing the responsibilities and obligations of corporations under international law, this session will assess the conduct of a series of companies regarding different aspects of the occupation. The Tribunal will also seek to uncover the system that allows corporations to act in such unlawful ways, and to show in what ways States and International organisations could be held accountable for this.

Following this session, which is currently under preparation, another international session is foreseen for 2011 in South Africa, which should be followed by a session in the United States of America in the same year. The whole process of the RToP will end with the organisation of an International final session, which
will make a final judgement that will encompass conclusions of each session.

Michael Mansfield QC in Barcelona

Raji Sourani at Press conference

What are the funds for?

The funds will be used to put together a film crew that will end up making at 30 mins DVD about the second session of the Russell Tribunal on Palestine, which will take place in November, in London, and focus on “Corporate Complicity in Israel’s violations of International Law“.

The DVD will then be used to promote the tribunal. We will show film in universities, schools, conferences and many other places. Film will also be available on our website.

Gisele Halimi in Barcelona


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