For the seven Palestinian civil society and human rights organizations forcibly shut by Israeli raids on Thursday, the reasons are quite clear.
According to Mazen Rantisi, head of the board of directors of the Health Work Committees, which runs hospitals and clinics, and was among the groups raided, the closures were aimed at “destroying Palestinian society.”
During the dawn military raids, which took place in Ramallah, offices were ransacked and equipment confiscated, with doors welded shut and a military order declaring the organizations “unlawful” posted on them.
Six of the organizations raided had been criminalized as “terrorist” organizations in October 2021 by Israel, which claimed they were affiliated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.
Since 1967, Israel has banned more than 400 local and international organizations, including all major Palestinian political parties. Fatah, which governs the Palestinian Authority, and the Palestinian Liberation Organization, which Israel itself signed the 1993 Oslo Accords with, are among them.
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