Human rights defender from Palestine creates video project documenting abuses

Issa Amro, a Human Rights defender from Hebron says “to be a human rights defender in the West Bank you have to be a strong person and want to help others, because this is a very dangerous area. My motivation came from having endured daily attacks and discrimination by Israelis. Palestinians cannot walk the streets freely. If I go to the Mosque, I have to pass through four to five security checks.”

Human rights defender from Palestine uses videos to document abuse © OHCHRMr. Amro has worked as a field researcher with B’Tselem, the Israeli Information Centre for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories, for the past three years, and is the creator of a video project which documents human rights violations, focusing on the region of Hebron and its Southern hills. He describes the situation there as arduous because of the Israeli occupation and says that Palestinians suffer because of settler and soldier attacks.

The Camera Distribution Project was launched in 2007, to train and empower civilians living in high conflict areas to advocate in their own defence by documenting human rights abuses through the use of videos. The Project is a way to provide protection and promote accountability, and has also been used as a tool to trigger investigations and initiate more media scrutiny.

“Palestinians in Hebron suffer many forms of discrimination,” according to Mr. Amro. He highlights, in particular, that in the Israeli courts, Palestinian and Israeli children are treated differently. Palestinian children are considered children only until the age of 12, where Israeli children are considered children up until 15 years old. Palestinians are under military law, and while the Israelis are living in the same place, they are covered under Israeli civil law.” 

Mr. Amro was featured on a video on the occasion of Human Rights day, 10 December, 2010 as a Human Rights defender.

11 January 2011