Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) decries the terrible accusations against defenders of Palestine, as published in Saturday’s New York Times, and offers the organisation’s solidarity to those accused.
In reaction to Israel’s latest wave of violence against the people of occupied East Jerusalem (or al-Quds, as it knows in Arabic) – notable worshippers in the al-Aqsa mosque and the residents of Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood – and the residents of the besieged Gaza Strip, a number of prominent figures in global entertainment have taken positions in solidarity with Palestinians.
The English-Albanian singer Dua Lipa has voiced her support after she won the prestigious Best Album at the Brit Awards. The models and sisters Gigi and Bella Hadid, who are half-Palestinian, have both voiced strong criticisms of Israel over the last period. Bella Hadid joined a pro-Palestine demonstration in New York on 15 May.
A number of prominent politicians, including Alexandria Ocasio Cortez, Rashida Tlaib (America’s first Palestinian congressperson), and Ilhan Omar have all taken positions in support of Palestine. “Apartheid states aren’t democracies”, Ocasio Cortez has said.
In response to Lipa and the Hadids’ positions, the World Values Network took out an advertisement the New York Time, in the newspaper’s main section, which explicitly named Lipa and the Hadids as “mega-influencers” who have “accused Israel of ethnic cleansing” and “vilified the Jewish State.”
This comes as the number of Gazans killed by Israeli bombardments continues to rise. At least 66 Palestinian children were killed by Israel, according to official figures.
In her response, Lipa wrote that “this is the price you pay for defending Palestinian human rights against an Israeli government whose actions in Palestine both Human Rights Watch and the Israeli human rights group B’Tselem accuse of persecution and discrimination”.
AOHR UK fully agrees with Lipa’s position, and believes that the accusations against her are a sign of desperation — no advertisement can hide Israel’s brutality. AOHR UK stands with Dua Lipa, the Hadids, and the Palestinian people.