ISRAEL/OCCUPIED TERRITORIES: HUMAN RIGHTS HEAD VISITS ISRAEL

The Amnesty International delegation will also include: - the organisation's researcher on Israel, the Occupied Territories and the Palestinian Authority, Dr Elizabeth Hodgkin; - military expert David Holley; - the Director of Amnesty International Norway Petter Eide; - and senior press officer Kamal Samari.

'It is time to stop playing politics with people's lives and suffering,' said Irene Khan. 'The international community must act now to end the human rights violations against both Palestinian and Israeli civilians. Any solution for this crisis must have human rights at its heart.'

Amnesty International has declared 27 and 28 April International Days of Mourning. The organisation's members around the world will be joining in solidarity with people in Israel and the Occupied Territories to mourn all victims of the human rights abuses committed in the region since the start of the second Intifada, and to demand justice and respect for human rights.

Amnesty International estimates that since the start of the Intifada in September 2000, at least 1,200 Palestinian adults, 260 Palestinian Children's rights, 260 Israeli and foreign civilian adults and 52 Israeli Children's rights have been killed.

In 1956, after a curfew was imposed on Kafr Qassem (a village in Israel), Israeli soldiers killed 47 Palestinians, including 15 Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights and 11 Children's rights, who returned to the village late after the day's work, unaware that a curfew had been imposed. In the resulting court case, the Supreme Court judge stated that the soldiers obeyed an illegal command: 'The distinguishing mark of a manifestly illegal order is that above such an order should fly, like a black flag, a warning saying: 'Prohibited!''

In the context of Amnesty International's Crisis Response, the black flag symbolises:

- mourning and solidarity with victims on all sides;

- the responsibility of each person to stand up against actions which breach international humanitarian and human rights law, whether they are committed in the name of security or in the name of liberty.

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